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Attwood, Charles (1791–1875), ironmaster, was born on 25 January 1791 at Hawne House near Halesowen, the sixth of seven sons and eighth of ten surviving children of Matthias Attwood (1746–1836) and his wife, Ann (1752–1835), daughter of Thomas Adams of Cakemore near Halesowen...

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Balfour, Arthur, first Baron Riverdale (1873–1957), steel maker and industrialist, was, by his own account, born in London on 9 January 1873. For some years his parentage was a mystery. He went to Sheffield in 1882 as an ‘orphan’ with Mary Fraser (1847–1906)...

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Bell, Sir (Isaac) Lowthian, first baronet (1816–1904), iron and steel manufacturer, was born at Newcastle upon Tyne on 15 February 1816, the eldest of four sons (out of seven children) of Thomas Bell (1774–1845), chemical and iron manufacturer, and his wife, Catherine, née...

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Bessemer, Sir Henry (1813–1898), steel maker, was born on 19 January 1813 at Charlton, near Hitchin, Hertfordshire, the only son of Anthony and Elizabeth Bessemer (a surname said to have been of Huguenot origin). He had an elder sister. According to Henry Bessemer...

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Boulton, Matthew (1728–1809), manufacturer and entrepreneur, was born on 14 September 1728 at New Hall Walk, Snow Hill, Birmingham, one of four children, three of whom survived to adulthood, of Matthew Boulton (d. 1759), toy manufacturer and merchant, and his wife, Christiana Piers (...

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Buttall, Jonathan (1752–1805), ironmonger, the possible subject of Thomas Gainsborough's painting The Blue Boy, was the eldest of the three sons of Jonathan Buttall (d. 1768), ironmonger, and Elizabeth, née Higgins (d. 1780). He was probably born at the family's house in ...

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Carnegie, Andrew (1835–1919), steelmaker and philanthropist, was born in Moodie Street, Dunfermline, Fife, on 25 November 1835, the eldest of three children of William Carnegie (d. 1855), a damask linen weaver, and his wife, Margaret. After the age of eight he was educated at a Lancastrian school. Other influences on him—aside from his parents' poverty—were his family's nonconformity (his father was a Swedenborgian) and its Chartist sympathies....

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Walter Taplin

revised by Peter L. Payne

Craig, Sir John (1874–1957), steel manufacturer, was born at Clydesdale, New Stevenston, Lanarkshire, on 11 December 1874, the fourth son of Thomas Craig, a furnaceman at David Colville's Dalzell ironworks, Motherwell, and his wife, Elizabeth Wilson. He was educated at Dalziel public school, Motherwell...

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Crawshay, Richard (1739–1810), ironmaster and merchant, was born in Normanton, Yorkshire, the first child of William Crawshay (1713–1766), a farmer, and his wife, Elizabeth (1714–1774), née Nicholson. He had three sisters. According to family tradition a bitter quarrel with his father led to the sixteen-year-old ...

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Elliott, Ebenezer [called the Corn Law Rhymer] (1781–1849), poet and bar-iron merchant, was born on 17 March 1781 in the new foundry of Masbrough in the parish of Rotherham, Yorkshire, one of eleven children (of whom eight reached maturity) of Ebenezer Elliott (...

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Ellis, Sir William Henry (1860–1945), civil engineer and iron and steel manufacturer, was born at Thurnscoe Hall, near Rotherham, Yorkshire, on 20 August 1860. He was fourth of five sons and one daughter of John Devonshire Ellis (1824–1906), a founding partner of John Brown & Co....

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Foley family (per. c. 1620–1716), ironmasters and government contractors, traces its origins to Richard [ii] Foley (1579/80–1657), baptized on 28 March 1580 at Dudley, Worcestershire. His father, Richard [i] Foley, was a nailer, an occupation which at this date provided a decent living and in which ...

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Guest, Sir (Josiah) John, first baronet (1785–1852), ironmaster, was born at Dowlais, near Merthyr Tudful, on 2 February 1785, the eldest child of Thomas Guest, manager and part owner of the Dowlais ironworks, and Jemima Revel Phillips of Shifnal in Shropshire. He had one brother and three sisters. His grandfather ...

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Haslam, Robert [Bob], Baron Haslam (1923–2002), industrialist, was born on 4 February 1923 at 37 Beech Street, Bolton, the only child of Percy Haslam, who ran a small painting and decorating business with his brother, and his wife, Mary Alice (Cissy), née Bentley...

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Hingley, Noah (1796–1877), ironmaster and manufacturer of chain cables, was born at Rowley, Staffordshire, on 7 March 1796, the son of Isaac Hingley and his wife, Esther, née Willetts. The surname of Hingley, largely confined to the Black Country, was reputed to be derived from Huguenot antecedents. Following his father's trade, ...

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Hughes, John (c. 1816–1889), ironmaster and engineer, was born at Merthyr Tudful, Glamorgan, the son of John Hughes, engineer. Although his family origins are obscure, his father was employed at the Cyfarthfa ironworks in Merthyr Tudful and, later, at the Victoria works in ...

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MacGregor, Sir Ian Kinloch (1912–1998), metallurgical engineer and industrialist, was born on 21 September 1912 at The Bungalow, Kinlochleven, Argyll, the third son of Daniel MacGregor, a works accountant, and his wife, Grace Alexanderina, née Fraser Maclean, a schoolteacher. His parents were leading lights in the ...

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McCance, Sir Andrew (1889–1983), steelmaster and metallurgist, was born at 12 Adder Steps, Cadder, Dunbartonshire, on 30 March 1889, the third of four children and younger son of John McCance, a cloth factor, and his wife, Janet Ferguson McGaw. His father subsequently worked for the ...

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Morewood [née Goodwin], Ellen (bap. 1741, d. 1824), colliery owner and ironstone extractor, was baptized on 1 January 1741 at St Oswald's parish church, Ashbourne, Derbyshire, the elder of two daughters of Richard Goodwin, a gentleman attorney of Mapleton, near Ashbourne. On 20 February 1768 she married ...

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Nettlefold, Joseph Henry (1827–1881), screw manufacturer, was born in London on 19 September 1827, the son of John Sutton Nettlefold (1792–1866) and his wife, Martha Chamberlain (1794–1866), both Unitarians. What was to become the future firm of Guest, Keen and Nettlefolds (GKN...