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British Industrial History

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Ransome and Co

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Maker of ploughshares, of Norwich and Ipswich (1789) and Great Yarmouth.

Genealogy of the Company

By 1779 Thomas and Robert Ransome were in business as ironmongers, stove grate makers and brass founders near the Red Well in Norwich[1]

1781 Thomas and Robert Ransome advertised parts for clock makers, at terms equal to those from London and Birmingham makers[2]

1783 Ransome and Co supplied patented cast iron plates and tiles for covering houses [3]

1785 The company, known as Ransome and Co, had been founded by Robert Ransome, an ironfounder in Norwich.

1785 Took out a patent for cast-iron ploughshares.

1786 Joshua Bullen and Co acquired the shop and stock of Ransome and Co, Market Place, Norwich. The Ransome patent cast iron plough share was advertised[4]

1789 The business Ransome and Co moved to Ipswich.

1803 Robert was responsible for one of the important developments in ploughs. This was the chilling process, whereby the underside of the share was made extra hard, while the upper part remained soft and tough. The upper part thus wore away faster than the lower, so that a sharp cutting edge was maintained and less draught was required.

1804 Ransome and Son, in Ipswich, and Ransome and Co, in Yarmouth, advertised new, improved cast iron plough shares under the patent obtained by R. Ransome[5]

James Ransome, son of Robert, operated a foundry in Great Yarmouth during the period 1804-1809. He entered into partnership there with James Birdsparke in 1806[6]

1805 The partnership of Robert Ransome, James Rumbelow and James Ransome of Great Yarmouth, under the firm of Ransome and Co, ironfounders, was dissolved; the business was carried on by James Rumbelow and James Ransome as James Ransome and Co[7]

In 1808 Robert Ransome took out a patent for the manufacture of interchangeable plough parts.

1809 Robert's son James became a partner in the company, Ransome and Son, in Ipswich.

1818 When Robert's son Robert Ransome, Junior joined the business it was renamed Ransome and Sons

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. Norfolk Chronicle 1779
  2. Norfolk Chronicle 17 March 1781
  3. Norfolk Chronicle 6 December 1783
  4. Norfolk Chronicle 8 Oct 1785
  5. Norfolk Chronicle 3 Nov 1804
  6. MERL [1]
  7. London Gazette 9 March 1805