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British Industrial History

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Robert John Robey Reeve

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Robert John Robey Reeve (1875-1937)

1937 Obituary [1]

ROBERT JOHN ROBEY REEVE was sales manager to the British Mannesmann Tube Company, Ltd., which in 1936 was absorbed by Messrs. Stewarts and Lloyds, Ltd., and renamed the Newport and South Wales Tube Company, Ltd.

He was born in London in 1875 and served a six years' apprenticeship, terminating in 1898, at the Elswick works of Sir W. G. Armstrong, Whitworth and Company, Ltd., after which he studied at Rutherford College, Newcastle upon Tyne. He then joined Messrs. Vickers Ltd., at Barrow in Furness, and was engaged in the hydraulic department on the design of gun mountings. Two years later he received an appointment with the [Underfeed Stoker Co|Underfeed Stoker Company]], and was responsible for the design of automatic stokers and for their erection in this country and in France and Sweden. In 1902 he became assistant to Mr. H. A. Humphrey, M.I.Mech.E consulting engineer, of Westminster, and was concerned with calculations and contracts for large central stations for generating and distributing Mond gas in South Staffordshire. He joined the Mond Nickel Company in 1904, as assistant works manager in their works near Swansea and took charge of the installation of plant for separating copper front nickel.

In the following year he returned to London as engineer and departmental manager of the Morgan Crucible Company, Ltd., Battersea, and held this position for five years, during which he took charge of all maintenance and constructional work and designed new machines for sonic of the special processes of the firm. He was subsequently appointed chief engineer and buyer to Messrs. J. Birch and Company, Ltd., and remained with the firm until 1927, with the exception of the period 1916-18 when he was engaged first as assistant inspector of gun carriages, Southampton Docks, and afterwards as chief ordnance engineer (Sheffield Area), in charge of all contracts for guns and carriages placed in that district. From 1919 Mr. Reeve also took over the duties of assistant manager for Messrs. Birch; he took charge of the export agencies for several important British engineering firms, and travelled extensively in the firm's interests in Africa and America. During 1927-9 he was joint sales manager and outside representative of The Staveley Coal and Iron Company Ltd., and he was so occupied until he joined the British Mannesmann Tube Company.

He was elected an Associate Member of the Institution in 1904 and was transferred to Membership in 1912. His death occurred at Tadworth, Surrey, on 20th September 1937.

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