George Stephenson - History

George Stephenson

George Stephenson was born in Wylam England in June of 1781 to uneducated working class parents. His parents did not have the money to send him to school, but once he started working he went to night school in order to learn how to read and write. He was adept at all things mechanical and became responsible for maintianing the engines in a groups coal mines. his first invention was a coal lamp that would not cause fires. He developed the first moder steam engine that was used in the mine the the Blucher. He is considered by many to be the father of the railroad engine.


Great Britons: George Stephenson – The Man Who Built the First Steam Railway

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George Stephenson was a 19 th century self-made railway engineer who designed the earliest steam-railway systems in Britain. His work set in motion the development of rail transport and greatly accelerated the growth of the Industrial Revolution.

Key Facts about George Stephenson:

  • Born 1781, died 1848
  • Rose from humble beginnings as an archetypal ‘self-made man’
  • Built the earliest freight and passenger railways and locomotives
  • Established rail as the major means of transport for a century

A Short Biography George Stephenson

The Industrial Revolution brought work which had previously been spread widely among small artisans into centralized production in factories. This meant that supplies had to be transported longer distances and in larger quantities, so efficient and economical transportation was, and still is, a key requirement for industrialization. The development of a canal network across Britain in the 18 th century was the first method used, with horse-drawn barges transporting heavy goods through a network of improved rivers and narrow canals. Barges were slow and their loads limited and by the middle of the 19 th century their use declined rapidly as the new railway system developed. George Stephenson was instrumental in developing the first railways lines that enabled transportation of goods on a vast scale and, almost accidentally, of people too, creating an accessible form of mass-transport that had a profound impact on society.

Stephenson’s career did not have auspicious beginnings. He was born in a village outside the North-England town of Newcastle upon Tyne, on June 9 th , 1781 to illiterate working-class parents. Because they had no money to pay for his education, Stephenson was also illiterate until he was 18, when he paid for night school with some of the earnings from his “wark int mines”. By the time he was 20 he was operating the lifting machinery that moved men and coal in and out of the mines. His interest in machinery led him to spend his spare-time at the mine taking machines apart to understand their workings. In 1811 this autodidactic approach paid off and he was promoted to engine-wright at the Killingworth Colliery, responsible for the running of the steam-operated pumps and machinery at the mine. The experienced he gained at this work proved invaluable to his future.

The first sign of his inventive abilities came when he tackled the problem of lights in the mines. Miners at the time worked underground with naked flames and this created a serious risk of explosion when flammable gases were released from the rocks. Stephenson invented a lamp with a screen which prevented the flame from igniting these gases, but the eminent chemist Humphry Davy had simultaneously invented a safety lamp too and this triggered a controversy over credit for the invention which lingered for years. The experience gave Stephenson such a distrust of the British establishment that he had his son Robert ‘properly’ educated so as to eliminate the northern accent that Stephenson believed had weakened his status in the dispute over the safety lamp.

At that time transportation within and around the mines was chiefly by horse-drawn waggons, sometimes running on wooden tracks. At the nearby Wylam Colliery there was a five-mile wooden track that had been built in 1748 which took the coal to the river Tyne to be loaded on boats. Stephenson heard that they were attempting at Wylam to build a steam engine to run on this track and he convinced his Killingworth manager to let him try to build one there. In 1814 his first locomotive, the Blücher, pulled 30 tons of coal up a hill at four mph. His real design breakthrough was in the wheels, where he used flanged wheels to both keep the locomotive on the track and increase the surface area to gain greater traction. In 1820 he built the first fully steam-powered railway on an eight-mile track at the Hetton Colliery.

In 1821 the British parliament approved plans for the 25-mile Stockton and Darlington Railway to transport coal. It was designed for horse-drawn wagons, but when the company director met Stephenson he changed his plans and hired Stephenson to construct the railway with a steam engine. Stephenson and his son Robert began work on the project in 1822. With partners they set up ‘Robert Stephenson & Co.’ to build the locomotives and named their first train Locomotion. The railway opened in 1825, with Stephenson driving Locomotion at speeds of up to 24 mph, pulling 80 tons of coal and flour and a passenger car called Experiment filled with dignitaries. This made it the world’s first passenger-train trip.

Stephenson went on to build the Bolton and Leigh Railway, and the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, which opened in 1830 with great excitement, making Stephenson famous and sought after to build other railways. The Liverpool and Manchester Railway featured the famous train Rocket, which had outclassed the competition in a contest to determine who gained the contract to supply the locomotives for the railway. Rocket was packed with innovations and was more the product of Robert Stephenson than of his father.

With his reputation established Stephenson received many contracts, including the first locomotives for the earliest railway lines in the United States. He ended owning several coal mines of his own, which must have given him great satisfaction after starting his life at the other end of that hierarchy. Robert’s mother had died in 1806 and Stephenson re-married in 1820. This wife died in 1845 and in January 1848 he married his housekeeper. However later that year he contracted pleurisy and died on August 12 th , 1848, aged 67. His only child Robert went on to fame as a railway engineer but died childless.

George Stephenson established Britain as the pre-eminent railway nation. Although his was not the very first steam-locomotive – the credit for that goes to Richard Trevithick – he did turn it into a practical means of transport. By encouraging the use of his track-width of 4 feet 8 ½ inches as the standard gauge still used today, he made the task of linking separate individual lines into a network a practical possibility.

Sites to Visit

Stephenson’s birthplace in the village of Wylam, outside Newcastle upon Tyne can be visited. The cottage is owned and operated by the National Trust.

There is a statue of Stephenson facing the Mining Institute near the railway station in Newcastle upon Tyne.

There is a statue of Stephenson at the railway station in Chesterfield, Derbyshire, where he spent the last 10 years of his life.

He is buried at the Holy Trinity church in the same town. There is a memorial in the church and stained-glass windows dedicated to him, but the actual grave is marked with just a rough stone slab with ‘G.S.1848’ carved into it.

The Chesterfield Museum has a collection of memorabilia of Stephenson on display.

There are replicas of Rocket at the Henry Ford Museum Dearborn, Michigan and at the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago. They were built by Robert Stephenson in 1929.

Further Research

Biographies of Stephenson include:

[Samuel Smiles used Stephenson as an example of his doctrine of ‘Self-help’ which made him famous as one of the first personal-development gurus.]

Top 10 facts

  1. Stephenson was one of six children born into a poor mining family in Wylam, Northumberland on 9 June 1781.
  2. His father, Robert, worked on the engines that were used to pump water from the mines and the young George Stephenson longed to be in charge of these steam-driven engines.
  3. As a young boy he had a number of jobs before going down the pit to mine coal at the age of ten. At 14 he became an assistant fireman and later worked on the winding machine which pulled the cages of miners up from the pit face.
  4. George did to know how to read or write until he was 18. He went to night school and taught himself over a three-year period. He wanted to learn as much as possible about engines.
  5. After George’s wife died, leaving him with a young son, Robert, George decided to go to Scotland and study engines. Later Robert helped his father on many projects and became a famous engineer and bridge builder in his own right.
  6. In 1811 George fixed the broken pump engine at a local flooded mine and impressed the owners. This led to him being promoted and acknowledged as a local expert on engines.
  7. He persuaded local backers to support his plan for a locomotive engine. In 1814 he built ‘Blucher’, his first locomotive, which travelled at 4mph whilst pulling a load of 30 tons.
  8. in 1823 Stephenson opened a locomotive factory in Newcastle. Two years later the first journey of his ‘Locomotion No 1’ with its carriage ‘Experiment' took place. The ‘Locomotion’ cost £500 to build, could carry 450 passengers and travel at 15mph.
  9. In 1828 the Railway Board announced a competition to determine which was the best engine. Stephenson’s ‘Rocket’ beat four other entrants on the grounds of weight, speed, power and reliability. The ‘Rocket’ successfully completed ten laps of the track at Rainhill achieving the dazzling speed of 29 mph on the final lap.
  10. The Stockton to Darlington line was the world's first passenger railway. The Manchester Liverpool Railway was opened in 1830 and in 1838 the line from Birmingham to London was completed.

A Golden Era: 1900 – 1914

When the business first started, it had been named ‘Barton Arcade Glass and China Shops’. On 23rd April 1900, Henry took the steps of officially registering his business as a limited company — it became known from this point as ‘H.G. Stephenson Limited’.

This period saw the business thrive as it began to supply new sectors such as hospitals, hotels, breweries and the railways.

Before the arrival of the Great War, two of Henry’s sons —Harry and John — had entered the scene to make H.G. Stephenson Limited a family business. During this successful time, expansion allowed Stephensons to open additional stores in St. Ann’s Square and Piccadilly.

George Stephenson - History

English Language and History

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Symphony No. 3 in G Major (‘Great National Symphony’):
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Muzio Clementi (1752-1832)

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HE would frequently invite to his house the humbler companions of his early life, and take pleasure in talking over old times with them. He never assumed any of the bearings of a great man on these occasions, but treated such visitors with the same friendliness and respect as if they had been his equals, sending them away pleased with themselves and delighted with him.

At other times, needy men who had known him in youth would knock at his door, and they were never refused access. But if he had heard of any misconduct on their part, he would rate them soundly. One who knew him intimately in private life has seen him exhorting such backsliders, and denouncing their misconduct and imprudence, with the tears streaming down his cheeks. And he would generally conclude by opening his purse, and giving them the help which they needed “to make a fresh start in the world.”

2 thoughts on &ldquo Stephenson, George &rdquo

my father capt Oakley kellers 3rd command with buckeye steamship co. caught in a storm on lake superior probably 1940 . she had a sharp bow and a wave smashed into her knocking the pilot house back several inches and tearing the companionway off with pieces found on the aft end. her whole forwd end was submerged and she shuddered and rose. his first command the steamer triston was sent to the atlantic for war duty and sunk by a german submarine in the keys. a totol of five commands with buckeye steamship co.

I sailed on her as a deckhand in 1946. I would like to get a picture of her.

George Stephenson biography

George Stephenson was born on June 9, 1781, in Wylam, near Newcastle-on-Tyne. His father Robert worked in the Wylam Colliery as a fireman, and the family's cottage was right beside the Wylam Wagonway. This wooden track took wagons from the colliery to the Tyne river for transport.

George was fascinated by machines from an early age. He took evening classes in reading and writing, even after he joined his father as a colliery worker. In 1802 Stephenson became an engineman, and soon after he married Frances Henderson. Together they had one child, Robert, but Frances suffered from consumption and died in 1806. Stephenson later married twice more.

Stephenson moved to Killingworth Colliery as an engineman, but his fascination with machines continued, and in his spare time he took apart the colliery engines to discover how they worked. So swiftly did he learn that he was appointed an engine wright for the colliery in 1812.

Stephenson developed a new safety lamp that would not explode when used near the highly flammable gasses found in the mines.

He also convinced the mine manager to experiment with steam locomotion. By 1814 he developed the Blucher, which was capable of pulling 30 tons up a grade at four miles per hour. His design was the first to successfully use flanged wheels running on rails.

Over the next several years Stephenson built a further 16 engines at Killingworth. The mine owners were so impressed with his accomplishments that they put him to work building an 8-mile railway from Hetton to Sunderland.

Stephenson was hired by the Stockton and Darlington railway to help build the line linking collieries at West Durham and Darlington with the River Tees. With his son Robert Stephenson, he formed Robert Stephenson & Company, the first locomotive building company in the world, headquartered in Newcastle. The first locomotive engine produced by the new company, called Locomotion, was finished in the fall of 1825.

The Stockton & Darlington line was officially opened on September 27, 1825. To rapt attention from crowds of onlookers, Stephenson guided the Locomotion along the 9-mile track in just under two hours.

Stephenson was hired by other railways, such as the Bolton & Leigh. But his big triumph came in 1829. The proposed Liverpool & Manchester railway directors held a trial to determine which locomotive to use for their railway. The winner also received the huge sum of £500.

The contest was held at Rainhill, and of ten engines entered, only five turned up and just three functioned well enough to take part in the Rainhill Trials. The winner was Rocket, produced by the Stephensons.

Stephenson went from strength to strength. He was chief engineer for the Manchester & Leeds, Birmingham & Derby, Normanton & York and Sheffield & Rotherham railways. He was constantly innovating, constantly improving his engines and the tracks.

He was so successful that he was able to purchase Tapton House, near Chesterfield, in 1838. He invested in coal mines, ironworks, and quarries, and also experimented with animal husbandry and stock breeding.

George Stephenson died at Tapton House on August 12, 1848.

To visit:
National Railway Museum, York. Tells the story of railways in Britain from the Rocket to the present day.
George Stephenson's Birthplace, Wylmam, Northumberland

George Stephenson - History

George Stephenson was born in Wylam , Northumberland , 9.3 miles (15.0 km) west of Newcastle upon Tyne . George Stephenson đã được sinh ra trong Wylam , Northumberland, 9,3 dặm (15,0 km ) về phía tây Newcastle upon Tyne. He was the second child of Robert and Mabel, neither of whom could read or write. Ông là đứa con thứ hai của Robert và Mabel, [1] không ai có thể đọc hoặc viết. Robert was the fireman for Wylam Colliery pumping engine, earning a very low wage, so that there was no money for schooling. Robert là lính cứu hỏa cho động cơ bơm than Wylam, kiếm được một mức lương rất thấp, do đó không có tiền cho việc học. At 17, Stephenson became an engineman at Water Row Pit, Newburn . Năm 17 tuổi, Stephenson đã trở thành một engineman tại Pit Row nước , Newburn. George realised the value of education and paid to study at night school to learn reading, writing and arithmetic—he was illiterate till the age of 18. George nhận ra giá trị của giáo dục và trả tiền để học tại trường học ban đêm để học đọc, viết và số học, ông bị mù chữ cho đến khi 18 tuổi. In 1801 he began work at Black Callerton colliery as a 'brakesman', controlling the winding gear of the pit. Năm 1801, ông bắt đầu làm việc tại Callerton than đen như là một "người sưa thắng, kiểm soát các thiết bị quanh co của hố. In 1802 he married Frances (Fanny) Henderson and moved to Willington Quay, east of Newcastle. Năm 1802, ông kết hôn với Frances (Fanny) Henderson và chuyển đến Willington Quay, phía đông của Newcastle. There he worked as a brakesman while they lived in one room of a cottage. Hiện ông làm việc như một người sưa thắng trong khi họ sống trong một căn phòng của một tiểu. George made shoes and mended clocks to supplement his income. George làm giày dép và đồng hồ vá để bổ sung thu nhập của mình.

In 1803 their son Robert was born, and in 1804 they moved to West Moor , near Killingworth while George worked as a brakesman at Killingworth pit. Năm 1803, con trai của Robert đã được sinh ra, và năm 1804, họ chuyển đến West Moor , gần Killingworth trong khi George đã làm việc như là một người sưa thắng Killingworth hố. His wife gave birth to a daughter, who died after a few weeks, and in 1806 Fanny died of consumption (tuberculosis). Vợ của ông đã sinh ra một đứa con gái, người đã chết sau một vài tuần, và năm 1806 Fanny chết vì tiêu thụ (bệnh lao). George then decided to find work in Scotland, and he left Robert with a local woman while he went to work in Montrose . George sau đó quyết định tìm việc làm ở Scotland, và ông Robert với một phụ nữ địa phương trong khi ông đi làm việc ở Montrose . After a few months he returned, probably because his father was blinded in a mining accident. Sau một vài tháng, ông trở về, có lẽ bởi vì cha của ông bị mù trong một tai nạn khai thác mỏ. George moved back into his cottage at West Moor and his unmarried sister Eleanor moved in to look after Robert. George di chuyển trở lại vào tiểu của mình ở West Moor và chị gái chưa lập gia đình Eleanor di chuyển trong để xem xét sau khi Robert. In 1811 the pumping engine at High Pit, Killingworth was not working properly and Stephenson offered to fix it. Năm 1811 động cơ bơm tại Pit cao, Killingworth đã không làm việc đúng cách và Stephenson đã đưa ra để sửa chữa nó. He did so with such success that he was soon promoted to enginewright for the neighbouring collieries at Killingworth, responsible for maintaining and repairing all of the colliery engines. Ông đã làm như vậy với những thành công đó rằng ông đã sớm thăng enginewright collieries láng giềng tại Killingworth, chịu trách nhiệm duy trì và sửa chữa tất cả các công cụ thác than. He soon became an expert in steam-driven machinery. Ông đã sớm trở thành một chuyên gia về máy móc hơi nước điều khiển.

Cornishman Richard Trevithick is credited with the first realistic design of the steam locomotive in 1804. Cornishman Richard Trevithick được cho là có thiết kế thực tế đầu tiên của đầu máy hơi nước năm 1804 . Later, he visited Tyneside and built an engine there for a mine-owner. Sau đó, ông đến thăm Tyneside và xây dựng một động cơ cho một chủ sở hữu mỏ. Several local men were inspired by this, and designed engines of their own. Một số người đàn ông địa phương đã lấy cảm hứng từ này, và được thiết kế động cơ của riêng mình.

Stephenson designed his first locomotive in 1814, a travelling engine designed for hauling coal on the Killingworth wagonway, and named Blücher after the Prussian general Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher . Stephenson đã thiết kế đầu máy đầu tiên của mình vào năm 1814, một động cơ đi du lịch được thiết kế để vận chuyển than trên wagonway Killingworth , và đặt tên Blücher sau khi Leberecht Phổ chung Gebhard von Blücher. It was constructed in the colliery workshop behind Stephenson's home, Dial Cottage, on Great Lime Road. Nó được xây dựng trong hội thảo than phía sau Cottage nhà, quay số Stephenson, trên đường Lime Đại. This locomotive could haul 30 tons of coal up a hill at 4 mph (6.4 km/h), and was the first successful flanged-wheel adhesion locomotive: its traction depended only on the contact between its flanged wheels and the rail. Đầu máy này có thể chuyên chở 30 tấn than lên một ngọn đồi tại 4 mph (6,4 km / h), và là thành công đầu tiên bích-bánh xe bám dính đầu máy kéo của nó chỉ phụ thuộc vào các liên lạc giữa các bánh xe có gờ và đường sắt. Altogether, Stephenson is said to have produced 16 locomotives at Killingworth, although it has never proved possible to produce a convincing list of all 16. Tổng cộng, Stephenson cho biết đã sản xuất 16 đầu máy xe lửa tại Killingworth, mặc dù nó chưa bao giờ chứng tỏ có thể tạo ra một danh sách có sức thuyết phục tất cả 16. Of those that have been identified most were built for use at Killingworth itself or for the Hetton collier railway . Trong số những người đã được xác định hầu hết đã được xây dựng để sử dụng tại Killingworth bản thân hoặc cho Hetton than đường sắt . A six-wheeled locomotive was built for the Kilmarnock and Troon Railway in 1817 but it was soon withdrawn from service because of damage to the cast iron rails. A further locomotive was supplied to Scott's Pit railroad at Llansamlet , near Swansea in 1819 but it too was soon withdrawn, apparently because it was under-boilered and also because of damage to the track. Một đầu máy sáu-có bánh xe được xây dựng cho các Kilmarnock và Troon đường sắt năm 1817 nhưng nó đã nhanh chóng thu hồi từ dịch vụ vì thiệt hại cho các đường ray sắt đúc ] Một đầu máy tiếp tục được cung cấp đường sắt Pit của Scott tại Llansamlet, gần Swansea vào năm 1819 nhưng nó cũng đã sớm thu hồi, rõ ràng bởi vì nó là dưới boilered và cũng bởi vì các thiệt hại để theo dõi.

The new engines were too heavy to be run on wooden rails, and iron rails were in their infancy, with cast iron exhibiting excessive brittleness. Các động cơ mới là quá nặng để được chạy trên đường ray bằng gỗ, và đường ray sắt trong giai đoạn trứng của họ, với gang trưng bày dòn quá mức . Together with William Losh , Stephenson improved the design of cast iron rails to reduce breakage. Cùng với William Losh , Stephenson đã cải thiện thiết kế của đường ray gang để giảm vỡ. According to Rolt, he also managed to solve the problem caused by the weight of the engine upon these primitive rails. Theo Rolt, ông cũng quản lý để giải quyết các vấn đề gây ra bởi trọng lượng của động cơ trên những đường ray nguyên thủy. He experimented with a 'steam spring' (to 'cushion' the weight using steam pressure), but soon followed the new practice of 'distributing' weight by utilising a number of wheels. Ông đã thử nghiệm với một mùa xuân hơi '(' đệm 'trọng lượng bằng cách sử dụng áp suất hơi), nhưng ngay sau đó thực hành mới của' phân phối trọng lượng bằng cách sử dụng một số bánh xe. For the Stockton and Darlington Railway , however, Stephenson would use only wrought iron rails, notwithstanding the financial loss he would suffer from not using his own, patented design (see below). [ 6 ] Đối với đường sắt Stockton và Darlington , tuy nhiên, Stephenson sẽ chỉ sử dụng đường ray sắt rèn, mặc dù sự mất mát tài chính, ông sẽ bị không sử dụng, sở hữu thiết kế được cấp bằng sáng chế của mình (xem dưới đây ). [ 6]

Stephenson was hired to build an 8-mile (13-km) railway from Hetton colliery to Sunderland in 1820. Stephenson đã được thuê để xây dựng 8 dặm (13 km) đường sắt từ Hetton than Sunderland vào năm 1820. The finished result used a combination of gravity on downward inclines and locomotives for level and upward stretches. Các kết quả hoàn thành sử dụng một sự kết hợp của lực hấp dẫn có chiều hướng đi xuống và đầu máy xe lửa với trình độ và kéo dài trở lên. It was the first railway using no animal power. Đó là tuyến đường sắt đầu tiên sử dụng không có quyền động vật.

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Other Locomotive Pioneers

George Stephenson was not the only engineer engaged in building locomotives in the early nineteenth century. Other coal mines had the same requirements as Stephenson's and funded designs of similar engines.

Richard Trevithick (1771–1833) was among the most famous, but least successful, pioneers in developing locomotives. Like George Stephenson, Trevithick was a mine engineer when he developed a miniature locomotive in 1796. In 1801 Trevithick demonstrated a larger working version, called Puffing Devil, by taking seven friends for a ride on Christmas Eve. But the locomotive only worked on short trips since it could not maintain steam pressure for long. James Watt (1736–1819 see entry), developer of the steam engine, saw Puffing Devil and thought that it posed a danger of exploding.

A series of other locomotives designed by Trevithick also failed most proved too heavy for the cast iron rails they ran over. Trevithick eventually moved to Peru to work as an engineer in a silver mine. There, his engines were successful, and he earned enough money to buy his own silver mine. But fighting during Peru's war for independence from Spain forced Trevithick to abandon his property and flee to Colombia in 1826. There, he met Robert Stephenson, who was building a railway. Stephenson sympathized with hisfellow English railroad pioneer and gave Trevithick enough money to get back to London. In 1828 George Stephenson credited Trevithick with important contributions in the evolution of the locomotive, but despite Stephenson's endorsement, Parliament (the British government) declined funding to pay Trevithick a pension (money paid in retirement). He died in extreme poverty in 1833.

William Hedley (1779–1843) was managing the Wylam coal mine in 1808 when the owner asked him to produce a steam locomotive. Hedley first introduced a system of smooth iron rails, convinced that the weight of the locomotive would produce enough traction. In 1814 Hedley produced a working locomotive that ran on eight wheels, instead of four, thereby distributing the weight so that the rails could support it.

In 1814 Hedley, aided by two craftsmen at the mine, Jonathan Foster and Timothy Hackworth, produced a working locomotive at almost the same time as George Stephenson. The design differed, principally in the way the steam engine delivered power to the wheels, but the Hedley model worked. Two engines he produced—including the Puffing Billy and the Wylam Dilly—were still functioning sixty years later.

Over the next five years, Stephenson built sixteen locomotives at Killingworth mine, mostly for use in the mine, but a few for use on a wagonway owned by the duke of Portland. Stephenson's work so impressed his employer that in 1819 the mine asked him to build a railroad 8 miles long, between the town of Hetton and the River Wear. For this project, Stephenson proposed a combination of locomotives and stationary engines. Locomotives hauled the loaded cars over the first, relatively level, section of track. Then they were pulled uphill by a steam engine at the top of the hill, using cables. The cars then coasted downhill, where another fixed engine, located at the top of the next hill, pulled them to the top. It was the first railway powered entirely by machines, with no animals used.

Working on this project, Stephenson realized that it would be a huge advantage if the railway could be built to be as level as possible. This project launched Stephenson on the second part of his career: that of a builder of railways.

In 1821 the British Parliament authorized the construction of a horse railway to connect coal mines in West Durham and Darlington, England, to the River Tees. Stephenson arranged a meeting with the owner of the company building the railway and told him that his Blutcher locomotive, which runs on iron tracks, could replace fifty horses.

Stephenson's argument was persuasive, and the Stockton and Darlington Railway gave the job to him. With his son
as his partner, Stephenson formed Robert Stephenson and Company, headquartered in Newcastle, England, to build the railway and the locomotives that would be used on it. It was the world's first company formed to produce locomotives.

On September 27, 1825, Stephenson operated his new engine, named Locomotion, along the nine-mile railroad in just less than two hours.


The now world-famous Rocket was entered by Henry Booth, treasurer of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, and George Stephenson, the line's engineer. Designed by George's son Robert, it was built at his company works at Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

John Braithwaite and John Ericsson designed and built Novelty in London—a considerable drawback, as there were no railways in the city in 1829 and so the engineers couldn't test it before the trials. It was very much a road-going steam coach put onto railway wheels.

Designed by Timothy Hackworth, Superintendent of the Stockton & Darlington Railway, Sans Pareil was a robust and workmanlike locomotive. Hackworth was hampered by a lack of funds and inadequate facilities at Shildon, where he built Sans Pareil, having to design and build the locomotive at his own (limited) expense while also dispatching his duties as Superintendent of the Stockton & Darlington Railway.

Perseverance was an adaptation of an engine for a road-going steam coach designed by Timothy Burstall of Edinburgh. It was dropped while being unloaded at Rainhill and after repair performed only a few demonstration runs—it was clearly underpowered, and Burstall withdrew from the trials.

Cycloped, owned by Thomas Brandreth, was powered by a horse walking on a drive belt. It was withdrawn from the competition after the horse fell through the belt after reaching a speed of only five miles per hour.

Watch the video: George Stephenson: The Father of the Railways (January 2022).