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British Industrial History

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John James Wright

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John James Wright (c1849-1927)

1927 Obituary[1]


The death of Mr. John James Wright, for 23 years with Messrs. Coode, Son and Matthews, occurred, at the age of 78, at his home in London on Wednesday, April 27. After early education at the Brierley Hill Academy and Dudley Grammar School, John Wright went, in 1863, as an apprentice to Messrs. Cochrane and Co., Woodside Works, Dudley, being afterwards taken into the regular service of that company. For some years he was engaged in the firm’s drawing office, where he designed and superintended the construction and erection of various engineering works, being engaged on a large contract for the firm in 1875, in connection with the extension of Portsmouth Dockyard, and, in the following three years, on further work in connection with the extension of Chatham Dockyard and the Ouse Viaduct. Later, he was engaged on the construction of a bridge over the Severn at Shrewsbury, works at Devonport Dockyard, and a bridge over the Avon at Bristol.

In June, 1885, Mr. Wright was engaged by the Cape Government as assistant engineer for the erection of a large railway bridge over the Orange River, and the following year was occupied in the widening of Cannon Street railway bridge, finally having sole charge for the completion of the work on behalf of Messrs. Cochrane and Company in 1890.

Mr. Wright joined the London staff of the late Sir John Coode in November, 1890, and occupied the position of chief assistant of the constructional ironwork department of Messrs. Coode, Son and Matthews, whose name has now been changed to Messrs. Coode, Fitzmaurice, Wilson and Mitchell, Limited. In this capacity, he designed and inspected work in connection with many large jetties and breakwaters in the Colonies, particularly at Port Elizabeth, Table Bay, Colombo, etc. He was also concerned with the building of a viaduct, 1,260 ft. long, for Dover Harbour, works at Trinidad, the Straits Settlements, and Hong Kong. Mr. Wright retired in 1913. He was elected an associate member of the Institution of Civil Engineers in 1888, and became a full member in 1901 ; resigned at the end of 1917."

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