SIR HENRY BESSEMER

From 1833 Sir Henry Bessemer lived in Islington at 15 Northampton Square, on the site today is the main entrance of City, University of London. Today, a Blue Plaque for Bessemer is being unveiled by the Mayor of Islington. This will be accompanied by an exhibition which will focus on the history of Northampton Square, Bessemer’s life and his invention of the revolutionary Bessemer Process, as well … Continue reading SIR HENRY BESSEMER

Christian Friedrich Lautenschlager in a Mercedes in the 1914 French Grand Prix

IMAGE LIBRARY ONLINE

Planes, trains and automobiles: mechanical engineering archives now online Over 1900 images from the archives and historic book collection of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) are now available online via VADS. From pictures of experimental cars, aeroplanes, engine designs, engineers portraits, railway locomotives and much more. Highlights include works of art of the Liverpool & Manchester Railway, images of Napier engines, design drawings of … Continue reading IMAGE LIBRARY ONLINE

British tank factory, 1917

100 YEARS OF THE TANK

“It was a weapon designed for one simple task: crossing the killing zone between trench lines and breaking into enemy defenses [sic].” (1) Today marks the 100th anniversary of the first tanks used in combat during World War One The Mark I British ‘landship’ was introduced at the battle of Flers-Courcelette ten weeks into The Somme  Organized in secret, the plan went awry when the … Continue reading 100 YEARS OF THE TANK

Queen Mary under construction

QUEEN MARY

80 years since the Queen Mary’s maiden voyage: documenting the construction and launching the RMS Queen Mary It’s 80 years since the maiden voyage of Cunard’s flagship liner, the Queen Mary, which held the transatlantic speed record from the 1930s to the 1950s. The IMechE library team has been cataloguing printed manuscripts ranging from the 19th to the 21st century,  and one of these is … Continue reading QUEEN MARY

Prosthetic Arm

ENGINEERING TIMELINE

Our Engineering history timeline needs you! Covering c6000 BD-2014 AD we highlight key moments of invention and leaps forward in engineering. Now, we want you to tell us what key inventions we have missed. All we need is the date of the invention etc and some brief details. Engineering has been an integral factor throughout history and a crucial instrument of change and development, from the … Continue reading ENGINEERING TIMELINE

Flying testbed B2 Canberra WK163 fitted with a NSc D1-2 Double Scorpion rechargeable booster rocket. Stamped on rear - Napier Luton Airport, Neg no 22641, and Secret.

VIRTUAL ARCHIVE: ENGINEERING HISTORY ONLINE

Whether you are in Dundee, Devises, Doha or Delhi you can now gain access to key items held in the Institution of Mechanical Engineers archive collection, all for free, just by going online. Curated from our extensive physical collections, our Virtual Archive showcases a selection of models, items, drawings, notebooks, photographs and documents about the history of engineering and the Institution. We have captured 3D … Continue reading VIRTUAL ARCHIVE: ENGINEERING HISTORY ONLINE

Visits made by members of the Institution of St Louis, Festival Hall and Cascades

MEET ME IN ST LOUIS

The Louisiana Purchase Exposition, or St. Louis World’s Fair, was an international event held in St. Louis in 1904. We know many Members of IMechE were planning on attending because James Rowan wrote to the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Secretary to suggest that their attendance would be a good opportunity for the two Institutions to hold a joint summer meeting in Chicago. A … Continue reading MEET ME IN ST LOUIS

ARCHIVE CATALOGUE

Announcing the launch of our new and improved archive catalogue, archive cat. Archive cat provides a gateway to 1000’s of records charting the history of the Institution and of mechanical engineering; the archive is open to all. Railway engineering, manufacturing, power plant development and automobile development are particularly well represented through personal and company papers. Personal papers of prominent mechanical engineers include those of George … Continue reading ARCHIVE CATALOGUE

FRANK EWART SMITH

    Frank Ewart Smith (1897-1995) was Deputy Director of Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI), he then went on to work with the NHS and undertook work as a Fellow of the Royal Society. During the Second World War he worked on armaments, especially the PIAT (Projector, Infantry, Anti-Tank portable weapon). Smith was also Vice President of the IMechE. His archive is now catalogued and open … Continue reading FRANK EWART SMITH

Engineers at War: from home front to battle front

ENGINEERS AT WAR: FROM HOME FRONT TO BATTLE FRONT

Engineers at War: from Home Front to Battle Front On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918, the guns of the Western Front fell silent after more than four years of continuous warfare. Engineers were involved in the conflict at every level, both at home and abroad. The First World War arguably represents the largest seismic shift of the … Continue reading ENGINEERS AT WAR: FROM HOME FRONT TO BATTLE FRONT