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British Industrial History

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William Henry Potter

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William Henry Potter (1860-1919)


1919 Obituary [1]

WILLIAM HENRY POTTER was born at Nottingham on 15th December 1860.

He was educated at the then Radcliffe Grammar School, and at the age of sixteen was apprenticed to Mr. William Benson, engineer, of Nottingham. During his apprenticeship he attended Science and Art classes at the Mechanics' Institute, gaining a Whitworth Scholarship in 1880.

In the following year he was employed as draughtsman to the Corporation of Liverpool.

He returned to Nottingham eighteen months later, and obtained a position as draughtsman and foreman of the erecting shop at Messrs. H. S. Cropper and Co., printing-machine manufacturers, with whom he worked until 1886.

Subsequently he was engaged as draughtsman at Messrs. Goddard and Massey's works for three years, during which time he was employed on the design of wire-netting machines.

In 1889 he undertook the abridging of patent specifications, having previously qualified for this position, and in 1893 he passed the Final Examination of the Institute of Patent Agents. From that time until his death he was actively engaged in patent and consulting engineering work, specializing in lace and hosiery machines and manufacture.

From 1883 to 1895 he was a lecturer in Engineering at the University College, Nottingham and at Derby.

His death took place at Nottingham on 2nd May 1919, in his fifty-ninth year.

He became a Member of this Institution in 1890.


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