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British Industrial History

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Henry White Bowden

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Henry White Bowden (1867-1926)

1867 Born in Preston, son of Henry Bowden, engineer and surveyor of Manchester

1887 Articled at the electrical engineering works of Elwell-Parker, subsequently Electrical Construction Corporation Co, Wolverhampton

1889 On the recommendation of his principal, Thomas Parker, was appointed Electrician to the Eastbourne Electric Light Co

1891 Offered post as Electrician and Assistant Manager of the House to House Electric Light Co of Kensington

Also took out some patents, one of which was bought up by his company

1893 Proposal to join the Inst Civil Engineers. Living in Putney

1901 Living in Brompton, London with his wife Kate and brother John H Bowden

1911 Consulting engineer, MIEE, MICE, living in Great Missenden, with his wife Kate and 3 children[1]


1926 Obituary [2]

HENRY WHITE BOWDEN commenced his electrical career at Wolverhampton, where he was articled as a pupil with Messrs. Elwell Parker and Co. For two years he was electrical engineer to the Eastbourne Electric Light Co.

In 1891 he took up the position of general manager to the House-to-House Electric Light Co. at Kensington (now the Brompton and Kensington Electricity Supply Co.). He was prominently connected with that company's affairs for many years, and during this period of continuous extension also became a director of the old Blackheath and Greenwich Electric Light Co. (now the South Metropolitan Electric Light and Power Co., Ltd.) in 1898 and supervised the erection of much of the plant of the South Metropolitan Co., of which he was managing director and engineer-in-chief.

In 1906 he also joined the Board of the Woking Electric Supply Co.

He was one of the pioneers of electricity supply in London, and in these days, when so much is being done to bring electrical service within the compass of the general populace, it is interesting to recall that he was very early in the field with free-wiring installation arrangements which gave the consumer up to six points free of charge.

He resigned his position as engineer-in-chief of the South Metropolitan Co. in 1919, also his seat on the board, but he continued as consulting engineer to the company.

He died in May, 1926, at the age of 58.

He was elected an Associate of the Institution in 1889 and a Member in 1904.


See Also

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Sources of Information

  • Civil Engineer Records 1820-1930