Men of Invention and Industry


Samuel Smiles

Series: Historical Figures
BISAC: BIO015000

This book, originally published in 1884, chronicles men of invention and industry up to the end of the 19th century. The early chapters relate to the history of a very important branch of British industry—that of Shipbuilding. A later chapter, kindly prepared by Sir Edward J. Harland of Belfast, relates to the origin and progress of shipbuilding in Ireland. The author provides as accurate an account as possible of the Invention of the Steam-printing Press and its application to the production of newspapers and books,—an invention certainly of great importance to the spread of knowledge, science, and literature, throughout the world. The last chapter consists of a series of autobiographies. It may seem at first sight to have little to do with the leading object of the book; but it serves to show that a number of active, earnest, and able men were comparatively hidden throughout society, ready to turn their hands and heads to the improvement of their own characters, if not to the advancement of the general community of which they formed a part.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Phineas Pett: Beginnings of English Shipbuilding
Chapter 2. Francis Pettit Smith: Practical Introducer of the Screw Propeller
Chapter 3. John Harrison: Inventor of the Marine Chronometer
Chapter 4. John Lombe: Introducer of the Silk Industry into England
Chapter 5. William Murdock: His Life and Inventions
Chapter 6. Frederick Koenig: Inventor of the Steam-printing Machine
Chapter 7. The Walters of ‘The Times’: Inventor of the Walter Press
Chapter 8. William Clowes: Book-printing by Steam
Chapter 9. Charles Bianconi: A Lesson of Self-Help in Ireland
Chapter 10. Industry in Ireland: Through Connaught and Ulster to Belfast
Chapter 11. Shipbuilding in Belfast: By Sir E. J. Harland, Engineer and Shipbuilder
Chapter 12. Astronomers and students in humble life: A New Chapter in the ‘Pursuit of Knowledge under Difficulties’


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