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British Industrial History

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Frederick Smeeton Williams

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Frederick Smeeton Williams (1829-1886)

1875 Author of 'The Midland Railway: Its Rise and Progress'. 1875 first edition.

c.1883 Author of 'Our Iron Roads'

DNB Entry (abridged).[1]

Frederick Smeeton, was educated at University College, London, and entered New College, St. John's Wood, in 1850, as a student for the ministry.

In 1857 he became pastor of the newly formed congregation at Claughton, near Birkenhead, but, resigning the charge some years later, he resided for a time with his father at Sibbertoft.

Upon the formation of the Congregational Institute in 1861 Williams became tutor in conjunction with the principal, the Rev. John Brown Paton, and remained in that position until his death. He died at Nottingham on 26 Oct. 1886, and was buried in the church cemetery on 30 Oct. He left a widow and eight children.

Williams was widely known as a writer on English railways. In 1852 he published his most important work, ‘Our Iron Roads: their History, Construction, and Social Influences’ (London, 8vo), which reached a seventh edition in 1888. In 1876 appeared ‘The Midland Railway: its Rise and Progress’ (London, 8vo), which attained a fifth edition in 1888. He was also the author of several religious pamphlets and of ‘The Wonders of the Heavens,’ London, 1852, 12mo; new edit. 1860.

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