Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Obadiah Elliot

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Obadiah Elliot (1763-1838)

1763 Born at Tonbridge

1794 Birth at Lambeth of son John Luke Swatland Elliot the son of Obadiah and Elizabeth

1804 Patent for mounting carriages on elliptical springs attached to the axle.

1804 Listed as freeholders in Surrey. William Pike, Christopher Leer and Obadiah Elliot as Coachmakers.[1]

1809 Listed at Marsh and Wall Liberty, Surrey. Obadiah Elliot, William Wright, William Pike and Christopher Leer as Coachmakers.[2]

1816 Birth of daughter Martha Austin the daughter of Obadiah Elliot, Coach Maker, and Sophia, of Westminster Bridge.

1829 Report of a burglary at his home at Spring Hill, Plaistow. 'a gentleman of fortune,'[3]

1838 January 13th. Died at Plaistow and buried at St. George's, Beckenham. Will mentions wife sophia and properties at Plaistow and Westminster Bridge.

1839 Marriage at Bromley, Kent, the Rev. John Molesworth Butt, to Caroline Amelia, the second daughter of the late Obadiah Elliot of Springhill House, Plaistow.[4]

Note from Ing. Frits van Solt 2021/09/08

Obadiah Elliot did not invent nor patented the elliptic spring in 1804. He patented the sole right to make carriages on horizontal springs without a perch.

With this patent he forced all other carriage makers in Great Britain for the duration of the patent (14 years) always to make a perch between the axles whether it was needed or not at all.

Normally such a request will not get a patent but he mixed up the application with information’s about Springs. The spring designs on his drawn up on his application however cannot work without a perch! The original inventor of the elliptic spring is most likely from Germany, but unknown.

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. Surrey, England, Jury-Qualified Freeholders and Copyholders
  2. Surrey, England, Jury-Qualified Freeholders and Copyholders
  3. London Standard - Thursday 03 September 1829
  4. Chelmsford Chronicle - Friday 08 February 1839