1873 - began studying applied mechanics and mathematics at St John's College, Cambridge. 1881–1883 - worked for Kitson & Co. of Leeds, where he developed a four-cylinder high-speed epicycloidal steam engine. 1884 - acquired a junior partnership in the firm of Clarke, Chapman & Co. of Gateshead. 1884 - the first Parsons turbo-dynamo constructed. 1889 - founded the firm of C. A. Parsons & Co. 1894 - Parsons takes out a patent for "propelling a vessel by means of a steam turbine, which turbine actuates the propeller or paddle shaft directly or through gearing." 1894-1897 - Turbinia, fitted with a Parsons steam turbine caused a sensation at the 1897 Spithead Naval Review. 1904 - appointed CB. 1911 - appointed KCB. 1927 - admitted to the Order of Merit.
ODNB: His son died in action in 1918. His daughter Rachel, one of the first women members of the Institution of Naval Architects, was a keen racehorse owner who was murdered at Newcastle racetrack in 1956.