Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Albert George Dew-Smith

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Albert George Dew-Smith (1848-1903) of the Cambridge Scientific Instrument Co

Born in Salisbury 27 Oct 1848

Died in Putney 17 March 1903

Dew-Smith was an amateur photographer active in the 1880s and 1890s. He worked as a lens grinder at the Observatory in the University of Cambridge.

Sir J. J. Thompson of Cambridge University described Dew-Smith as one of the best photographers of his day. To address the needs of the Physiological Laboratory at Trinity College, Dew-Smith established a workshop, at his own expense, in a small house in St. Tibbs Row in Cambridge, and engaged 'a very skilful character named Pye'. The production of apparatus required greater knowledge of science and engineering, and this need was met by Horace Darwin. With his aid, the magnitude and scope of the work increased, and the business became the Cambridge Scientific Instrument Co.[1].

However, another source does not mention Pye in this context, but states that Dew-Smith provided financial backing for a mechanic named Robert Fulcher.[2]. This source also states that the roots of the company were in Panton Street, and that the move to larger premises in St. Tibbs Row came in 1882. In 1891 the partnership between Dew-Smith and Darwin was dissolved. Darwin took control of the Cambridge Scientific Instrument Co, while Dew-Smith took over the Journal (of Physiology) and expanded into lithography.

For more information, see here.[3]

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. 'Recollections and Reflections' by Sir J. J. Thompson, 1936
  2. 'The Scientific - The Story of the Cambridge Scientific Company' by Donald J. Unwin, published by the Cambridge Industrial Archaeology Society and the Museum of Technology, 2001 & 2002
  3. [1] 'Find a Grave' website - Albert George Dew-Smith