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Richard Trevithick, English engineer and inventor, c 1790.

This copy of a contemporary miniature on ivory shows Richard Trevithick (1771-1833) as a young man. Born into a tin mining family from Cornwall, Trevithick was the first to use high-pressure steam to drive an engine. Until 1800, the weakness of existing boilers had restricted all engines to being atmospheric ones. Trevithick, set about making a cylindrical boiler which could withstand steam at higher pressures. This new engine was well suited to driving vehicles. In 1804 Trevithick was responsible for the first successful railway locomotive. He also designed steam road carriages and a large number of stationary steam engines.

Image No. 10248452 | This is a Rights Managed image.

Inventory No.: 1965-0221
Source No.: 1965-0221

Credit © NRM/Pictorial Collection / Science & Society Picture Library -- All rights reserved.
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