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John Anderson (1850-1934)

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John Anderson (1850-1934)


1934 Obituary [1]

JOHN ANDERSON was associated with many pioneering achievements in engineering and public works in New Zealand.

He was born in Edinburgh in 1850, and was the son of John Anderson, founder of the Christchurch, N.Z., firm of Messrs. Andersons.

John Anderson, Jun., was brought to New Zealand at an early age and educated at Scots College, Christchurch.

In 1866 he returned to Scotland and received his technical education under Professor W. J. M. Rankine, M.I.Mech.E., at Glasgow University.

He served a five years' apprenticeship, terminating in 1873, with Messrs. P. and W. Maclellan at the Clutha Ironworks, Glasgow, after which he returned to his father's firm, where he was employed in the drawing office.

In 1875 he was appointed manager, and in 1897 he became a senior partner. Five years later he was elected chairman and managing director, and held this position until his retirement in 1933.

He was also a director of the Christchurch Press Company from 1903 to 1920, and a director of the New Zealand Shipping Company.

Mr. Anderson was associated with the construction of the section of the North Island trunk railway from Te Buiti to the headwaters of the Mokau river, and later constructed the Makatote viaduct in the Province of Wellington. He also built sections of the Rakaia-Ashburton Forks line, and of the Midland line, and imported locomotives and rolling stock for the latter section. The firm also manufactured boilers and steam engines for industrial purposes and subsequently commenced the manufacture of oil engines.

Later Mr. Anderson turned his attention to the importation and manufacture of special dairying machinery, churns, and other equipment for dairy farmers. With the commencement of oil importation in bulk into the Dominion, the firm began the construction of large storage tanks in all parts of the country.

Mr. Anderson continued to live in Christchurch after his retirement, and died there on 26th May 1934, in his eighty-fifth year.

He was elected to Membership of the Institution in 1905.


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