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James Fraser (d.1923)

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James Fraser ( -1923) of the Post Office


1923 Obituary [1]

JAMES FRASER, who retired from the position of Post Office Engineer at Aberdeen only a short time prior to his death, joined the Post Office in Aberdeen in 1877, and after service as a telegraphist was transferred to the engineering department and appointed relay clerk at Nevin. He was promoted to be a second-class engineer in the Central Metropolitan District and transferred later to the Designs Section at Headquarters.

He was then promoted to the rank of executive engineer at Sunderland, but returned to London as engineer in charge of the C.T.O. Section, and later returned to the Telegraph Section of the Engineer-in-Chief's office.

In 1918 he was transferred to his native town, where he continued to reside after his retirement.

As a teacher of magnetism and electricity and telegraphy he was most successful. Himself a triple medallist of the City and Guilds, he inspired his students with the fire of his own zeal, and his classes at the Northampton Institute were attended by large numbers of the C.T.O. staff.

In 1910 he was awarded the Junior Silver Medal of the Institution of Post Office Electrical Engineers for his paper on "The Theory and Development of Common Battery Telegraphs," and in the October 1917 issue of the Journal of that Institution he contributed a valuable article on the duplex balance, which investigated mathematically the conditions necessary to secure a balance on long high-capacity lines on both differential and bridge systems of duplex. He was chairman of the Aberdeen Sub-Centre of the Institution 1921-22, and when he withdrew from active teaching work he was appointed examiner in magnetism and electricity for the City and Guilds of London Institute, a position he held until his death, which occurred on the 4th October, 1922.

In September 1914 he was sent to France to supervise the termination of a cross-Channel cable, and for his services he was awarded the 1914 medal, being the only civilian, it is believed, to receive that honour. He was held in the highest regard by his colleagues, revered by his pupils and esteemed as a man of sterling worth.

He was elected an Associate of the Institution in 1886, an Associate Member in 1909, and a Member in 1922.


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