1802 - moved to Glasgow with his father's engine shop business. 1812 - while Partner at the Greenhead foundry at Camlachie near Glasgow he made the boiler and produced the castings for the engines for the first steamboat, the Comet. 1815 - continued to work at Greenhead and designed the engines for the Britannia and Dumbarton Castle. 1817 - the Marion, for which he designed and built the engine, began operating on his own account on Loch Lomond. 1818 - was contemplating starting his own fleet of ocean-going steamers. 1820 - began a parallel service to his Loch Lomond steamers down Loch Eck with a steam carriage connection to the Holy Loch, where he built a hotel and holiday villas. 1835 - the boiler of his steamer Earl Grey exploded at the quayside at Greenock, killing six people and injuring several more. 1836 - left Glasgow for London. 1837 - purchased an open site on the Isle of Dogs, alongside William Fairbairn's yard. 1839 - launched his first experimental iron steamer, the Eclipse. 1852 - the London shipyard closed.