A photograph of James Nasmyth (1808-1890) stood beside his steam hammer, taken by J B Dancer in about 1855. Albumen print. Photograph taken at Bridgewater Foundry, Manchester.
A succesful engineer based in Manchester Nasmyth was approached in 1837 by the Great Western Steam Company. They needed a machine tool, a steam hammer, to help make the engines for the steamship 'Great Britain'. Nothing at the time was strong or precise enough, but Nasmyth's design for a giant steam hammer could both forge the iron plates for a warship or hammer in a nail.
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- The Kodak Collection at the National Media Museum, Bradford
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