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British Industrial History

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Francis Bramah

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Francis Bramah (1786-1840)

1786 Born the second son of Joseph Bramah

1812 Married Eliza Shaw (Schawe)

1821 Francis Bramah, Pimlico, Engineer, became a member of the Institution of Civil Engineers.[1]

Francis Bramah and Edward Bramah joined their father's business; name changed to Bramah and Sons

1839 Resident in St George's Hanover Sq[2]

1840 Death age 56 [3].

1841 Will of Francis Bramah of Eaton Street, Saint George, Hanover Square, Middlesex, Date 8 October 1841


1841 Obituary [4]

Francis Bramah was the second son of the late Joseph Bramah, whose numerous inventions, perfection of workmanship, and genius in the mechanical arts, have rendered his name so widely and justly celebrated. The opportunities afforded to the son were ardently embraced by a mind of no ordinary powers, deeply imbued with the love of knowledge. Although his attention was in early youth more particularly directed to branches of minute mechanical construction, his acquaintance with the principal departments of professional knowledge and general science was very extensive.

His attachment to the arts and to science was deep and sincere, and among many proofs of this may be particularly mentioned the valuable and essential services which he rendered to your late Honorary Member, Thomas Tredgold, both in his professional pursuits and in the prosecution and verification of his theories and calculations.

Mr. Bramah being professionally engaged at Buckingham Palace, in connexion with some other engineers, difference in opinion existed and discussion arose, as to the true principle upon which the strength of cast-iron beams to resist stress and flexure ought to be estimated, and with the view of verifying the principles laid down by Tredgold, he instituted a very extended series of experiments, on the deflection and strength of cast-iron beams. These he presented to the Institution, and they are published in the second volume of your Transactions.

Several important works were executed under his direction, among which the iron work of the Waterloo Gallery at Windsor Castle ; the cranes, the lock-gates, and their requisite machinery, at the St. Katherine’s Docks; and the massive gates at Constitution Hill and Buckingham Palace, may be particularly mentioned.

Mr. Bramah was an early and deeply-attached Member of this Institution; his constant attendance at the meetings, the information which he communicated, and his unwearied zeal as a Member of the Council, cannot be too highly estimated, and his loss will be deeply felt and regretted within these walls.

The variety of his attainments, his refined taste in the arts, his amiable character and the warmth of his affections, had secured to him the respect and esteem of a most extensive circle of friends, by whom, as indeed by all in any way connected with him, his loss will be most deeply and sincerely felt.


See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. 1821 Institution of Civil Engineers
  2. London, England, Electoral Registers
  3. The Era, 20 December 1840
  4. 1841 Institution of Civil Engineers: Obituaries