Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Stehelin et Huber

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of Bitschwiller, France

In 1795 Henri Stehelin (1774-1842) started to acquire forges and mines in the valleys of Saint-Amarin and Masevaux.

In December 1830, with his nephew Henri Huber (1806-1848) and his cousin Charles Stehelin (1805-1848), they founded Stehelin & Huber to develop the foundry of Bitschwiller-lès-Thann, established in 1827.

They hired a British mechanical engineer, David Lloyd (b.1797), making it possible to rapidly diversify their range of products, initially waterwheels, then steam engines and boilers. Henri Stehelin retired in 1832. Edouard (1809-1904), mining engineer, brother of Charles, joined the company in May 1837.

In 1839 the company supplied a locomotive for the Mulhouse-Thann railway, and two locomotives for the Strasbourg-Basel Rly. In 1840 the Paris-Orleans ordered six locomotives.

David Lloyd left the company in 1839.

The lowering of customs duties in March 1837 from 30 to 15% made imported British locomotives cheaper than the home produced machines. Further, Stehelin & Huber machines proved unreliable and required heavy repairs. Locomotive manufacture was discontinued, but other railway equipment was produced.

The company name became Charles & Edouard Stehelin (1843-1849), Stehelin & Cie (1850-1872), and Bitschwiller Construction Company Company (1872-1900).

The above information is condensed from 'Chroniques ferroviaires d’Alsace (1839-2011)' [1].

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. [1] Nicolas Stoskopf. Chroniques ferroviaires d’Alsace (1839-2011). 2012. hal-01271886