John Wilkinson 1728 - 1808

English; British
born in:
Cumbria, England, United Kingdom

1755 - was named as a partner in his father's Bersham iron concern. 1775 - made his first steam engine cylinder for the firm of Boulton and Watt and, subsequently devised a new lathe, the cylinder lathe, for the more accurate casting of cylinders - an invention of great importance which secured him a virtual monopoly, for Watt would not recommend other cylinder makers to those who wished to install his engines. Shortly afterwards, he set up ordnance works on his own pattern at Indret, near Nantes for Marchant de la Houlière. 1779 - was an original subscriber to the world's first iron bridge - that over the Severn at Ironbridge - though he withdrew in favour of Abraham Darby III. 1790 - started experimenting with puddling. 1792 - bought the Brymbo Hall estate in Denbighshire. 1796 - all of his foundries were producing about one-eighth of the nation's iron. 1801 - following investment into two banks, joined a new Birmingham banking partnership.