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David Napier, Engineer (1790 - 1869)

David Napier, Engineer (1790 - 1869)

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Published by Clyde Steamers
This is an important account of the development of steam-powered ships, from the time of the little river steamers, Fulton's "Claremont" and Henry Bell's 1812 "Comet", through to the first true sea-going steamers - Here one will find just as much about the first Clyde Steamers as about those which were the first to regularly and reliably cross The Irish Sea and The English Channel, nearly all, in one way or another, thanks to the work of David Napier and his family.
This is an important account of the development of steam-powered ships, from the time of the little river steamers, Fulton's "Claremont" and Henry Bell's 1812 "Comet", through to the first true sea-going steamers - Here one will find just as much about the first Clyde Steamers as about those which were the first to regularly and reliably cross The Irish Sea and The English Channel, nearly all, in one way or another, thanks to the work of David Napier and his family.

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Categories:Types, Research, History
Published by: Clyde Steamers on Nov 07, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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08/13/2012

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DAVID NAPIER - ENGINEER - 1790 -1869
An Autobiographical Sketch with Notes
DAVID DEHANE NAPIER
"By hammer and hand our Art over all Arts doth stand"(Motto from a Snuff-box that belonged to David Napier, 1808)GLASGOW JAMES MACLEHOSE AND SONS - PUBLISHERS TO THE UNIVERSITY1912
NOTE
 The Introduction, including the particulars of my grandfather, David Napier's life and mattersrelating thereto, as well as the Notes, have been gathered together by Mr. David Bell of 16Eton Place, to whose labours I am indebted for whatever is of interest beyond the Memoiritself.DAVID DEHANE NAPIERGlasgow, May 1912
CONTENTS
IIntroductionIIDavid NapierIIIMEMOIR BY DAVID NAPIERIVBusiness Life in GlasgowVLife in London, 1837 - 18691
 
VISteam Vessels Built for, or Engined by, David NapierVIIPatentsVIIIParliamentary Report on Steam Navigation
Notes
01Peter Nicholson02Carron and Clyde Iron Works03Dumbarton Engine04Francis Smith05aHenry Bell05bThe "Comet"06Robert Fulton07John Wood08Patrick Miller09William Symington10Camlachie Foundry11The "Dumbarton Castle" and "Britannia"12The "Britannia" and " Hibernia"13James Cook14The "Rob Roy"15Charles M'Intosh16Loch Lomond Steamers17Glenshellish18Kilmun19Steam Carriage20Lancefield21Robert Napier22Tod and M'Gregor23Bossut24Armoured Gun-BoatAppendixIndexILLUSTRATIONSA Trip up Loch Lomond (Photogravure), Frontispiece"Marion" Sailing Bill The "Charlotte Dundas" The "Majestic" Sailing Bill The "Comet," 1812Henry Bell's Promissory Note, 12th February 1814Henry Bell's Promissory Note, 17th May 1814David Napier, BustDavid Napier, Bust The "United Kingdom"Sailing Packet The "United Kingdom" Section The "United Kingdom" Engines The "United Kingdom" BoilersMillwall House, frontMillwall House, back John D. Napier, Millwall Period2
 
Francis Napier, Millwall PeriodSteeple EngineDavid Napier The "Superb" The "Majestic"Double BottomOld Paddle-Wheel at GlenshellishWater Tube BoilerCertificates of Admiral BickertonMrs. David NapierHenry Bell"Comet's" Engines John WoodWilliam SymingtonLancefield HouseGlenshellish HouseMr. and Mrs. Egbert Napier John D. NapierRobert D. NapierMap of Lancefield District, 1840
Introductory
 The marvellous development of manufactures, trade and commerce during the past centuryhas been due so directly to the improvement of the steam-engine, and the establishment of steam navigation, that a special interest attaches to the Memorials of those who were thepioneer workers in these departments of industry. The steam engine as a prime mover is acomparatively modern invention, dating no further back than the end of the seventeenthcentury and recognised as having had its real origin in the ingenious devices associated withthe names of Morland, 1682, Papin, 1685, and Savery, 1696. The arrangements introduced bythese inventors, although of a simple nature, marked a distinct advance. Prior to their time theonly application of steam to what could be reckoned useful work consisted in simply letting itspressure act directly upon the surface of water confined within a closed chamber or vessel,thereby forcing the water through an outlet pipe to a higher level. Then followed theintroduction of a " floater" upon the surface of the water to lessen condensation, theduplicating of vessels to obtain a continuous discharge from their alternating pressures, andother mechanical arrangements more or less ingenious, but without the necessary efficiencyto rank them as prime movers. The steam-engine properly so called, although in rudimentary form, came into view about1690, when the important stage was reached of using a piston working in a cylinder, andadopting means for condensing the steam that had pressed the piston upward in order tomake the return stroke by atmospheric pressure. These ideas were definitely recognised bythe distinguished inventors named above, but the mechanism they designed and employedwas still of too rude a character to constitute an eflfective engine even for pumping purposes.Having complete knowledge of what, to this point, had been accomplished, and profiting bythe experience of the earlier engineers, Newcomen, aided by Savery and others, next took upthe work of improvement, and their patent of 1705 marked a distinct and important step in theeff"ective application of steam to industrial and commercial uses. The engine resulting underthis patent formed a connecting link between the primitive steam-pump and the modernengine ; and it was recognised as, undoubtedly, "the simplest and most powerful machine thathad hitherto been constructed." It was welcomed as meeting a universal want, and within afew years engines of this type had found their way into the industrial areas of Europe andAmerica. The Newcomen proved of special value in the development of mining, and it gave an3

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