Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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James Rumsey

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James Rumsey (1743-1792)

American millwright and inventor.

1788 Took out patent no 1673 for boilers and a steam engine. Later took out patent Nos 1738 (1790), 1825 (1791) and 1903 (1792).

For information on Rumsey steam boat work, see Rumseian Society website

1792 Rumsey died in London, and is commemorated in Westminster Abbey. Part of memorial text [1]:-
'This epitaph by Robert Herrick...was restored in memory of James Rumsey whom the State of West Virginia honours as the inventor of the steamboat, which he demonstrated privately to George Washington in 1784 and publicly on the Potomac river at Shepherdstown, W.Va. 3 December 1787. Born of English parents in Cecil County, Maryland in 1743, he died while lecturing on the principles of steam navigation to English scientists in London and was buried in St Margaret's churchyard 24 December 1792'.

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. [1] Westminster Abbey website: James Rumsey