Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 142,936 pages of information and 228,821 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.
Henry Robinson Palmer (1793-1844) was a British engineer who designed the first monorail system and invented corrugated iron
1793 Born at Hackney the son of the Revd Samuel Palmer, a nonconformist minister, and his wife, Elizabeth, née Walker
He was educated at the academy run by his father.
1811-16 Apprenticed to Bryan Donkin and Co
On finishing his apprenticeship Palmer was engaged by Thomas Telford and worked for him for ten years on a large number of road and canal surveys and associated designs.
1818 Palmer was one of three young engineers key to the founding of the Institution of Civil Engineers
1820 May 23rd. Formally became a member of the Institution of Civil Engineers.
1823 Palmer wrote a short book 'Description of a Railway on a new Principle' on his monorail ideas
1825 June. Description of the one mile railway and its demonstration.  Palmer's monorail is regarded as the precursor of the Schwebebahn Wuppertal and of the Lartigue Monorail system.
1825 He gave parliamentary evidence in favour of navigation interests and against the Liverpool and Manchester Railway
1826 Appointed resident engineer to the London docks where, over the next nine years, he designed and executed the Eastern Dock, with the associated warehousing, entrance locks, bridges, and other works.
1827 March 30th. Married Mary Ann Emma Osmond at St. Martin in the Fields, Westminster, London 
1828 Invented the "Corrugation and Galvanisation" of sheet iron while engineer of the London Dock
Regarding Palmer’s invention of corrugated iron, Dr. Pedro Guedes wrote that 'Palmer exploited the unique properties of metal, creating a lightweight, rigid cladding material, capable of spanning considerable distances without any other supports, helping to make lightweight iron buildings and roofs possible. Palmer’s invention completely broke with precedent and tapped into another level of thinking. The sinusoidal corrugations that Palmer imagined as the means to impart strength to his sheets of wrought iron have continued virtually unchanged for close on two centuries.'
1831 He was elected FRS, and published two papers on tides and the movement of shingle in the Philosophical Transactions , 1831 and 1834.
1833 Patent for improvements in the construction of arches, roofs etc. HPR of Fludyer Street, Westminster, Civil Engineer. 
c1835 Moved to Westminster as a consulting engineer and was involved in numerous surveys for projected railways, and the design and construction of several docks and harbours, including those at Port Talbot, Ipswich, Penzance, and Neath. He carried out the original surveys for the South Eastern Railway, assisted by P. W. Barlow, and would have executed the scheme but ill health intervened. His original surveys for a Kentish railway dated from the time he was associated with Telford
1837 Patent for improvements on giving motion to barges and other vessels on canals. HRP of Great George Street, Westminster, Civil Engineer. 
1839 H. R. Palmer was the engineer to the London Dock Co. Patent on the 22nd of November, 1821.
1841 Listed at 2 Great George Street as a Civil Engineer. 
1842 Patent for improvements in the construction of roofs and the application of corrugated plates or sheets. HRP of Great George Street, Westminster, Civil Engineer. 
1842 Published 'Description of the Harbour of Port Talbot' in the Transactions of the Institution of Civil Engineers.
1844 September 12th. Death at his residence in Great George Street, Westminster, Civil Engineer. 'He was the favourite pupil, and for many years principal assistant, of the late Mr. Telford, Civil Engineer, and was one of the founders of the Institution of Civil Engineers, of which he was one of the vice-presidents.'  He died of dropsy
Rev. Samuel Palmer was born at Bedford, was educated at Bedford grammar school, and then studied for the ministry (1758–62) at Daventry Academy under Caleb Ashworth.
Rev Samuel Palmer (John ) was born on 26 Mar 1741 and baptized on 5 Apr 1741 in Bedford. He was employed as Non-Conformist Minister.
In 1762 he became afternoon preacher to the independent (originally Presbyterian) congregation at Mare Street, Hackney, and was ordained on 21 November 1763. From 10 June 1763 he occasionally assisted William Langford, D.D. (1704–1755), at the Weigh-house Chapel, Little Eastcheap, and was the regular morning preacher there from 20 June 1765 to 28 December 1766. He then succeeded William Hunt as morning preacher at Mare Street, and remained in charge of the congregation, which moved in 1771 to St. Thomas's Square, till his death.
Samuel married Elizabeth Walker in 1768 in Hackney. She was born in 1749 and died on 20 Oct 1821 in Hackney
He died 2 on 28 Nov 1813 and was buried on 6 Dec 1813 in Hackney, London
For some years, from about 1780, he had a boarding-school. He was a quiet preacher, his views being close to those of his friend, Job Orton. He early adopted Sunday school for his church. Henry Forster Burder was his assistant from October 1811; but Palmer remained active in his charge to the last, preaching on the Sunday before his death. He died on 28 November 1813, and was interred on 6 Dec. in the burial-ground at St. Thomas's Square. His funeral sermon was preached by Thomas N. Toller of Kettering, Northamptonshire.
He left a large family. His son Samuel entered Daventry Academy in 1786, and became a schoolmaster at Chigwell, Essex.
Samuel and Elizabeth had the following children: