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John Ramsbottom (1814-1897)
9th President of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers
Ramsbottom was born in Todmorden, England in 1814.
He worked in his father's cotton mill for some years In 1839 he entered the service of Sharp, Roberts and Co, manufacturers of locomotives and cotton-spinning machinery.
In 1842, he was appointed locomotive superintendent of the Manchester and Birmingham Railway. When this line was absorbed by the London and North Western Railway in 1846, he became district superintendent of the northern and north-eastern sections. In 1857 he was promoted to the position of locomotive superintendent at Crewe, from which position he retired in 1871.
He was responsible for a number of inventions and improvements, including the piston with simple packing-rings; tamper-proof safety-valves; a device to enable locomotives to pick up water whilst running; a new system for manufacturing steel tyres, and a horizontal duplex steam-hammer.
In 1883 he became consulting engineer to the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway for the design and construction of their Horwich Works, and he later became a Director of the Railway.
He was an original member of the Institution. He died in 1897.