Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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George Henry Corliss

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March 1888.
1876. Corliss Beam Engine at The 1876 Philadelphia Exhibition.
1904. Hamilton-Corliss Engine.
1904. Hamilton-Corliss Valve Gear.

George Henry Corliss (1817-1888) was an American engineer and the head of the Corliss Steam Engine Co.

He was born at Easton, Washington County, NY, on June 2nd 1817.

He was 27 years old when he associated himself with John Barstow and E. J. Nightingale, under the name of Corliss, Nightingale and Co.

In 1849 he took out patents to protect his inventions to improve the steam engine.

In 1867 the Corliss engine won first prize at the Paris Exhibition gaining him notoriety amongst his peers.

In 1868-1870 he was in the State Senate.

In 1870 he was awarded the Rumford Medal by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

As a member of the committee at the Centennial Exhibition of 1870, Mr. Corliss showed a 1400 hp engine which turned all the machinery in the building offering him great respect.

In 1873, in the Vienna Exhibition, of the 400 engines exhibited nearly all were of the Corliss type.

In 1876 he was a presidential elector.

In 1878 the institute of France presented him with the Monoyon Medal; the highest honour for mechanical achievement.

In 1886 the King of Belgium made him an Officer of the Order of Leopold.

He was twice married and had a son and a daughter.[1]

He died on February 21st 1888 at age 71.

1888 Obituary [2]

1888 Obituary [3]


The Hamilton Corliss engine was made by the Hooven Owens Renschler Company of Hamilton, Ohio. These engines were most commonly known as "Hamilton Corliss Engines"[4]

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. Engineering Journal, 23rd March 1888, Maw and Dredge.
  2. The Engineer 1888/03/23
  3. Engineering 1888 Jan-Jun: Index: General Index
  4. The Corliss Engine [1]