Liverpool History Society Questions

A selection of Liverpool history questions submitted to the Liverpool History Society

>William Chadburn (28 Feb. 1844 – 3 Apl. 1927)


att.: the Secretary
Hello – I have done a lot of research into the ship’s telegraphs and the founding family behind the development of this revolutionary device.  Today the telegraphs are collectors items; furthermore, they  are exhibited in more than 50 maritime museums worldwide, incl. the Albert Dock complex.
It was the inventor William Chadburn (28 Feb. 1844 – 3 Apl. 1927)  who was the dynamic force in the business. Due to public demand for info  I set up a website in 2003, and have written and contributed  articles over the last 12 years. 
I have discussed with staff at the museum the need for better recognition of this invention; now largely forgotten.  In fact ‘Chadburn’  has become a generic term for telegraphs regardless of make!  If you care to log on to  you will be able to gain better understanding what the trade-mark means especially in shipping circles.   The Society’s web site also incorporates other local instrument makers, such as: A Robinson of Bootle,  and  J.W. Ray & Co.  – the latter firm still exists in Knowsley.  Most of the famous liners and cargo vessels built from 1870 onwards had manoeuvering equipment supplied by  Chadburn, and its later fellow/competing  manufacturers. Their monopoly position was only broken in the 1930s.
We would like to honour the pioneering efforts of the Chadburn organisation with a memorial preferably to be located in or near the city centre, and wonder if you can offer advice how to proceed with such a project? 
With best regards
Dick Midhage                                                            York,  30 No. 2009.          (tel. 01904 637712.) 

30/11/2009 - Posted by | William Chadburn

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