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British Industrial History

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Benjamin Dobson

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Benjamin Dobson (1823-1874) of Dobson and Barlow

1823 Born in Greater Bolton, son of Benjamin Dobson, machine maker, and his wife Frances[1]

1851 Living at Mere Hall, Little Bolton: Benjamin Dobson (age 27 born Great Bolton), Master machine maker employing, in conjunction with partner, 1,200 hands, (presumably Dobson and Barlow). With his brothers and sister: Frederick Dobson (age 23 born Great Bolton), Elizabeth Dobson (age 19 born Great Bolton), Edward Dobson (age 18 born Great Bolton), Sailor. Three servants.[2]

1865 Benjamin Dobson, Dobson and Barlow, Machine Works, Bolton[3]

1874 June 21st.


1875 Obituary [4]

Benjamin Dobson was born in 1823 at Bolton, where his family had carried on the business of machine makers since 1790.

He entered the establishment of his father in Bolton, where he mastered the various mechanical details in the construction of cotton-spinning machinery.

In 1846, after the death of his father he entered into partnership with the late Mr. Metcalf; and the new firm of Dobson and Metcalf having constructed new extensive works in Bolton removed there from the old works.

On the death of Mr. Metcalf in 1851, he entered into partnership with the late Mr. Barlow of Bolton, and the name of the firm became Dobson and Barlow, which is still retained.

Mr. Dobson retired from the business about two years before his death, which took place at Clifton on 21st Jane 1874, in the 5lst year of his age. His name is associated with many important inventions in cotton-spinning machinery, and the spinning trade of Lancashire is largely indebted to his firm for the rapid progress it has made daring the last thirty years. In order to ensure exactness and economy in production he invented many special tools, and thus secured a widely extended reputation for the machinery made at his works.

He became a Member of the Institution in 1865.



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