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British Industrial History

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Bartel Wilton

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Bartel Wilson (1863-1938)

1938 Obituary [1]

BARTEL WILTON was the eldest son of the late Bartel Wilton, Sen., the founder of the shipyards and engineering works at Rotterdam and Schiedam, Holland, associated with his name. He received his education on the Continent, and served his apprenticeship in his father's workshops.

Subsequently he came to England, and received further training at Messrs. Richardson's Hartlepool Engine Works from 1879 to 1885. He also attended a large number of trial trips of vessels built by Messrs. Richardsons. Later he went to sea as junior engineer in S.S. Gothenburg City, of the Furness Line, sailing between England and America. In 1886 he returned to Holland and was made assistant manager in his father's business; he was appointed manager in 1890.

During the next three years his father relinquished several of his activities in connection with the firm's work, and Mr. Wilton gradually assumed control. The firm was made a limited liability company in 1895, and Mr. Wilton thereupon became managing director. For almost forty years afterwards he took a leading part in controlling the affairs of the company. He developed the scope of the business to include shipbuilding as well as repair work. The first vessels constructed by his firm were steam tugs for the company's own use. Subsequently this side of the business grew rapidly, and large docks were acquired and the workshops were considerably extended.

Mr. Wilton retained a seat on the board of the company for a few years after relinquishing active control of the firm, eventually retiring a short while before his death, which occurred at Voorburg, Holland, on 15th February 1938, in his seventy-fifth year.

He had been a Member of the Institution since 1901 and was also a Member of the Institution of Naval Architects.

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