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British Industrial History

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Hugh Erat Harrison

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Hugh Erat Harrison (1859-1909)


1909 Obituary [1]

HUGH ERAT HARRISON, BSc., born at Westminster on the 23rd April, 1859, died in London on the 12th August, 1909.

At the time of his death, he was Principal of the Electrical Standardizing, Testing and Training Institution, which he founded in 1889.

He had previously, after a distinguished college career, gained a varied experience in electrical engineering work. He acted as Board of Trade inspector for electrical work in several districts, and was a frequent contributor to the technical press, showing especial knowledge of alternating currents.

Mr. Harrison was elected an Associate Member of The Institution on the 14th April, 1885.


1909 Obituary [2]

HUGH ERAT HARRISON died on August 12, 1909, at the age of 50.

He was born at Westminster in 1859, and educated at University College, London, where he gained an exhibition and took honours in experimental physics.

He was for a time with the Anglo-American Brush Company, and the Hammond Electric Light and Power Company, Sheffield, and organised for the latter firm an electrical engineering college in Red Lion Square, London.

In 1885 this was closed, and he became a partner in the firm of Phillips, Harrison, and Hart.

In 1889 he organised and founded the Electrical Standardising, Testing, and Training Institution, Faraday House, Southampton Row, which he carried on up to the time of his death. He organised a Testing Department, and was made Board of Trade Inspector for several towns. He was also an examiner to the Board of Education, and was one of the delegates sent by the Institution to the International Congress at St. Louis in 1904.

In the early days of Faraday House, Mr. Harrison used to give a complete course of about seventy lectures on electrical engineering. He began with electrostatics, and gradually developed the whole subject in a clear and lucid manner. He spent much thought in simplifying algebraical proofs, and was fond of illustrating physical laws by graphic methods. He had a high opinion of Faraday's "Experimental Researches," and in a pamphlet entitled "Opsigraphics" applied the conception of Faraday tubes to the simple solution of many problems. His laboratory skill was acquired from Professor Carey Foster, and he used often to follow the Socratic method of asking his students simple questions in order to make them think for themselves.

Mr. Harrison became an Associate of the Institution in 1881, and a Member in 1886. He was twice elected on the Council, where his services proved most valuable. He was possessed of a singularly clear judgment, and was a man of strong character.


1909 Obituary [3]

. . . the Principal of the Faraday House Electrical Standardising, Testing, and Training Institution . . . [more]



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