Sectional model of independent 'cabinet' beam engine by Boulton, Watt & Co., comprising a copy in wood of inv. 1858-1.
This fine wood model was commissioned by Bennet Woodcroft, Director of the Patent Office Museum, for presentation to James Gibson-Watt in 1865-66. Woodcroft was negotiating to obtain for the museum the complete workshop of eminent Scottish engineer James Watt, which remained in one piece at Watt's home, Heathfield, outside Birmingham. Woodcroft presented this model to Gibson-Watt, along with a promise that the workshop would, if given to the museum, be preserved in a specially-constructed room at his 'police-guarded, fire-proof' offices at Southampton Row, London. Unfortunately, Gibson-Watt turned the model down, and it entered the Patent Office Museum's collection to show through its careful sectioning the internals of inv. 1858-1, the model which had previously belonged to James Watt, and which was already in the museum's collection.