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William Butterton

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William Butterton (1854-1899)

1900 Obituary [1]

WILLIAM BUTTERTON, born on the 25th April, 1854, began his engineering career as a pupil in the office of Messrs. Butterton and Light, Civil Engineers, of Westminster.

He was subsequently employed from 1875 to 1882 in assisting Messrs. Nimmo and McNay and Mr. G. W. Willcocks and others, in railway and tramway works; and during a portion of that period he had charge of the construction, at Haggerston, of a large gas-holder tank, erected for the Imperial Gaslight Company.

From 1879 to 1882 he was engaged in preparing for Mr. John Russell the Parliamentary plans and sections for several railways in England and Ireland, in setting out for contract and preparing drawings and estimates for the Belfast and High Hollywood Railway, and in setting out and locating the line between Portrush and the Giant’s Causeway.

He was likewise employed at various times on contract-surveys and estimates for the late Mr. G. P. Bidder, Past-President, and on general office work, levels, tidal observations, and inspection of materials for Mr. W. J. Kingsbury.

Early in 1882 Mr. Butterton was placed in charge of a survey of 105 miles for the extension of the Natal Government Railways between Ladysmith and the Transvaal Frontier, across the chief ranges of mountains, for which work the late Sir (then Mr.) George Berkley, Past-President, was the Consulting Engineer.

On the completion of that survey in the spring of 1884, Mr. Butterton was appointed District Maintenance Engineer, in responsible charge of from 100 miles to 150 miles of the railways open for traffic, including also reconstruction works. He acted subsequently as District Engineer for the Charlestown-Johannesburg extension.

In 1897 Mr. Butterton resigned the Government service and started private practice in Durban as an engineer and contractor, and in July, 1899, he returned to England in failing health. Unfortunately the change did not have the desired effect, and he died in London on the 18th November, 1899.

Mr. Butterton was an able engineer, conscientiously devoted to his work. Courteous in manner and ever ready to assist his younger brethren, he was much esteemed by all associated with him.

He was elected an Associate Member of the Institution on the 14th April, 1885, and was transferred to the class of Members on the 11th December, 1888.

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