Grace's Guide To British Industrial History

Registered UK Charity (No. 115342)

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 163,113 pages of information and 245,598 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 147,919 pages of information and 233,587 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

John Jones and Sons

From Graces Guide
January 1880.


June 1880.
1887. Engines of SS Bencroy.
1887. Engines of SS Bencroy.
Photographed in Punta Arenas, Chile.

John Jones & Sons of St. George's Engine Works and Clarence Dock, Liverpool.

John Jones and Sons of Marine Engine Works, William Street, Liverpool.(1872)

1852 John Jones, formerly a partner in Jones, Turner and Evans of Newton-le-Willows, started a locomotive business [1] after his earlier works, Jones and Potts of Newton, were leased to the LNWR.

1853 Fitted out some of the first stern-wheel steamers built in this country, shipped them in parts to India[2]

1866 Supplied steam-driven hydraulic hoists to the works of the Mersey Steel and Iron Co, for raising railway wagons. They were lifted 30 ft from a tunnel connecting to a siding served by the Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway. The main hoist was topped by a 20 ft diameter turntable. This rotated as the hoist rose and fell, being guided by rollers in spiral tracks. Automatic cut-outs acted when the hoist reached the top of its travel. From the turntable, the wagon could be sent to the works’ south yard, or across to a traversing table for transfer to another lift, whence the wagon could be passed to the Bessemer plant. [3]

1866 John Jones died. Presumably the business was carried on by his 3 sons.

1877 Dissolution of the Partnership between John Jones, Charles Jones, and James Jones, as Engineers and Iron-founders, carrying on business at Liverpool, under the firm of John Jones and Sons, so far as regards the said John Jones. Charles Jones and James Jones would continue to carry on the business under the said firm of John Jones and Sons.[4]

1882 Handed over a steamer, the ninth one built for the owner Joseph Hoult.[5]

1884 Built boilers for the SS Abyssinia at the St George's Engine Works

1891 Advert. For description of works see 1891 The Practical Engineer.

1896 Made floating caissons for Liverpool’s new North Docks. These were more or less ship-shaped, and had a boiler supplying steam for centrifugal pumps driven by single cylinder vertical engines [6]

1897 Launched paddle steamers Pearl and Ruby. [7]

1903 Built the ship's engines for The Danny

John Jones merged with Cammell Lairds not long after that date.[8]

1904 Sale Notice: '..... the Important MARINE MACHINERY WORKS, IRON FOUNDRY, and BOILER WORKS, known as the ST. GEORGE'S IRONWORKS, situate CARLTON-STREET and REGENT-STREET, LIVERPOOL, and now carried on by JOHN JONES AND SONS (ST. GEORGE'S IRONWORKS), LTD. ..... The buildings are commodious, well lighted, and well constructed, and comprise foundry, boiler shop, erecting shop, and machine shops, with separate entrances to Regent-street and Carlton-street. The total area is about 3,000 square yards. ..... The sale will also comprise the whole of the valuable machinery and tackle specially suitable for every kind of work connected with marine engineering, ship repairing and boiler making. The machinery includes steam hammers, drilling machines, steam punching and bending machines, planing machines, plate-bending rolls, hydraulic rivetting machines, lathes, large (wall creeper) planing machine, cross boring machines, engines, boilers. 40-ton travelling cranes, &c.; three cupolas, brass foundry, and smithy. ...'[9] Note: The 1906/1908 25" O.S. map here shows a fairly large industrial building between Carlton Street and Regent Street, separated from Regent Road/Waterloo Road (the dock road) by small buildings (including a pub at each corner). On the opposite side of Regent Road was the Clarence Dock wall. The old buildings no longer exist.

1908 Advert: 'LINE OF DOCKS.- To be Sold by Private Treaty, those extensive Sheds in REGENT-STREET and CARLTON-STREET, opposite the CLARENCE DOCK, known as ST. GEORGES IRONWORKS, and lately occupied by John Jones and Sons as boiler shops, erecting shops, and foundry: area of land about 3,000 square yards; tenure and partly freehold and partly Corporation leasehold. Apply to J. W. Davidson, Cookson and Co, 6, Castle Street.'[10]

  • The Danny is believed to be the the oldest Mersey built steam ship still in existence.[11]
  • "In 1900 a site was acquired at Tranmere, up-river from the existing yard of Laird Brothers. On it stood a row of large, private houses, the recently built headquarters of the Royal Mersey Yacht Club and a small shipyard owned by John Jones and Sons. Laird Brothers and John Jones - which was soon bought out - formed the Tranmere Bay Development Co Ltd. in March 1902 to undertake work on a 98.5 acre site. The installations included a yard to build ships of up to 1,000ft in length, well in excess of the largest size envisaged. It was provided with six slipways, two graving docks, new engine and boiler shops and a 15 acre fitting out basin, the UK's largest privately owned wet dock. The docks and basin were opened in 1906."[12]

Note: RE: Amedeo plate (pictured): The steamship was bought by José Menéndez of Co of Punta Arenas, Chile. In September 1892 the steamship Amadeo arrived in Punta Arenas on its maiden voyage, carrying bricks to build the family home. It was the first of the ships of their property. The Amadeus has been declared a National Monument by the Chilean Government, and his remains are on the beaches of the bay of San Gregorio (Chile), on the Strait of Magellan.[13] [14]

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. 'British Steam Locomotive Builders' by James W. Lowe. Published in 1975. ISBN 0-905100-816
  2. 1891 visit by I Mech E to the St George's Works
  3. 'Engineering', 23rd November 1866
  4. London Gazette 5 February 1879
  5. Liverpool Mercury - Tuesday 05 September 1882
  6. Engineering, 4th September 1866
  7. The Engineer 1897/05/07
  8. Family records
  9. Liverpool Daily Post - Monday 18 April 1904
  10. Liverpool Daily Post - Saturday 13 June 1908
  11. Family records
  12. Steel, Ships and Men:Cammell Laird, 1824-1993 by Kenneth Warren (p103)
  13. Wikipedia
  14. Dr SJ Andrews