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Thomas Mowat

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Thomas Mowat (1863-1938)


1938 Obituary [1]

THOMAS MOWAT was managing director of Messrs. Harpers, Ltd., founders and engineers, Aberdeen, with whom he had been connected for the whole of his engineering career, covering a period of sixty years.

He was born at Midmar, Aberdeenshire, in 1863, and entered Messrs. Harpers works as an apprentice in 1878, serving until 1884. Subsequently he was employed in the drawing office, principally upon gearwheel design. In 1889 he was appointed superintendent of draughtsmen, patternmakers, and millwrights, and three years later he supervised the erection of machinery in new works built by the firm.

Mr. Mowat was appointed works manager in 1896. He was responsible for the design of special boring mills, milling machines, and gearwheel-moulding machines for the firm's products, and invented a novel method of machining the teeth of large spur or bevel gearwheels. In the early years of this century he was closely associated with Mr. John Harper in the development of the motor car in Scotland, and was the patentee of the friction clutch bearing his name. He also took a leading part in the design and production of machinery for diamond and gold mines in South Africa.

In 1912 he was appointed managing director, a position which he held until his death. During the War he served on the Aberdeen Board of Munitions; and from 1925 until his death he was chairman of the Engineering and Allied Employers Aberdeen District Association and a member of the General Council of the National Federation. Mr. Mowat's death occurred in Glasgow on 18th May 1938.

He had been a Member of the Institution since 1901.


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