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Samuel Gordon Brebner

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Samuel Gordon Brebner (1848-1895)

1895 Obituary [1]

SAMUEL GORDON BREBNER was born in Aberdeen, on 18th June 1848.

In January 1860 he was apprenticed to Messrs. Kirk and Perry, building contractors, and was engaged in the erection of several large buildings in London, Brighton, Dover, Portsmouth, &c.

In August 1864 he entered the Royal Arsenal at Woolwich, whore he served an apprenticeship in the machine shops of the Royal Laboratory until December 1869, during which period he assisted in the erection and repairs of engines and boilers, both on shore and of steamers calling there for that purpose.

Subsequently he was employed in the erection of machinery at Brantford, Middlesex; and was finally engaged by the Secretary of State for India in August 1871 to proceed to Kirkee, Bombay Presidency, in connection with the erection of the whole of the plant of the Small-Arms Ammunition Factory.

In February 1873 he was appointed principal foreman, which position he held for nine years; in 1882 he became first assistant mechanical engineer, and in 1883 chief mechanical engineer. Since then he received the thanks of the government, and on three occasions an honorarium for his inventions.

He took in active part in the volunteer movement, having been a member on the Poona Corps from its commencement in 1877, and was captain of the Kirkee company.

In March 1893 he left India on a year's deputation to Woolwich Arsenal, in connection with the manufacture of Lee-Metford ammunition. His services were subsequently placed at the disposal of the superintendent of the gunpowder factory in connection with the manufacture of cordite; but his failing health prevented his going through the course of training at Waltham Abbey.

He therefore retired from the service on 16th March 1895, after having been appointed by the Secretary of State for India on 4th October 1894 chief mechanical engineer of the new explosives factories in Kirkee.

After a long and painful illness his death took place at Charlton, Kent, on 6th June 1895, in the forty-seventh year of his age.

He became a Member of this Institution in 1889.

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