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British Industrial History

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Thomas Samuel Speck

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Thomas Samuel Speck (1836-1883)


1884 Obituary [1]

THOMAS SAMUEL SPECK was born in London in 1836, and served the usual term of pupilage under Mr. F. H. Trevithick.

When Mr. Trevithick was appointed locomotive and carriage superintendent of the Grand Trunk Railway, Canada, he accompanied his chief, and was placed in charge of the drawing office. He made the drawings of the first locomotive built by the company; and was subsequently engaged in the construction of the carriage and wagon stock, besides being employed as one of the principal assistants in the supervision and working of the western portion of the line, including that part lying in the State of Michigan, U.S.

Returning to England in 1860, he became assistant to the late Mr. William Martley, then locomotive and carriage superintendent of the London Chatham and Dover Railway, and was engaged in designing and erecting the rolling stock and shops, and in the general supervision of the works.

In 1868 he was appointed locomotive and carriage superintendent of the Scinde Railway; and on the amalgamation of that line with the Punjaub Railway he was offered by the Indian government the only appointment then vacant, that of chief assistant locomotive superintendent on the Bombay Baroda and Central Indian Railway, which however he declined.

Leaving India early in 1871, he was appointed resident engineer and locomotive and carriage superintendent of the Metropolitan District Railway, which position he held till June 1881.

He died on 3rd November 1883, and was buried on 8th November at Kensal Green. The very large and spontaneous attendance at his funeral, of his late colleagues, and of the men employed under him both on the Metropolitan District Railway and on the London Chatham and Dover Railway, and of numerous private friends, testified to the universal esteem and regard in which he was held by all who knew him.

He became a Member of the Institution in 1876.


1884 Obituary [2]

THOMAS SAMUEL SPECK, born in London in 1836, was a pupil of Mr. F. H. Trevithick. When the latter was appointed Locomotive- and Carriage-Superintendent of the Grand Trunk Railway, Canada, Mr, Speck accompanied his chief, and was placed in charge of the drawing-office. He made the drawings of the first locomotive built by the company, and was subsequently engaged in the construction of the carriage and wagon stock, besides being employed as one of the principal assistants in the supervision and working of the western portion of the line, including that part lying in the State of Michigan, U.S.

Returning to England in 1860, he became assistant to the late Mr. William Martley, then Locomotive- and Carriage-Superintendent of the London, Chatham, and Dover Railway, and was engaged in designing and erecting the rolling-stock and shops, and in the general supervision of the works.

In 1868 he was appointed Locomotive- and Carriage Superintendent of the Scinde Railway; and on the amalgamation of that line with the Punjab Railway he was offered by the Indian Government the only appointment then vacant, that of Chief Assistant Locomotive-Superintendent on the Bombay Baroda and Central Indian Railway, which, however, he declined. Leaving India early in 1871, he was appointed Resident Engineer and Locomotive- and Carriage-Superintendent of the Metropolitan District Railway, which position he held till June 1881.

He died on the 3rd of November, 1883, and was buried on the 8th at Kensal Green. The very large attendance at his funeral of his late colleagues, and of the men employed under him on the Metropolitan District Railway as well as those on the London, Chatham, and Dover Railway, and of numerous private friends, testified to the universal esteem and regard in which he was held by all who knew him.

He was elected an Associate of the Institution on the 3rd of December, 1872, and was transferred to Member on the 11 t,h of May, 1875.



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