Nasmyth, James

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Nasmyth, James Gender: M
born on 19 August 1808 at 06:00 (= 06:00 AM )
Place Edinburgh, Scotland, 55n57, 3w13
Timezone LMT m3w13 (is local mean time)
Data source
Accuracy in question
Rodden Rating C
Collector: Taeger
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_leocol.18.gif 26°01' s_mo.18.gif s_cancol.18.gif 21°59 Asc.s_vircol.18.gif 08°26'

James Nasmyth


British engineer known primarily for his invention of the steam hammer.

Nasmyth showed an extraordinary mechanical inclination while still a schoolboy in Edinburgh, building successful model steam engines. For two years he worked in Henry Maudslay’s machine shop in London and subsequently moved to Manchester, where rapid industrialization was in progress. In 1836 he began to build his own foundry near the junction of the Bridgewater Canal with the newly opened Liverpool and Manchester Railway. He made machine tools of all kinds along with a variety of steam-powered machines. Isambard Kingdom Brunel, when designing his steamship Great Britain, originally made plans for paddle wheels of exceptional size. Nasmyth solved the challenging problem of forging the drive shaft by designing and fabricating a powerful steam hammer, which he patented in 1842. Although the Great Britain was eventually furnished with screw propellers instead of paddle wheels, the steam hammer immediately became an important part of the metallurgical arsenal of the Industrial Revolution.

Besides steam hammers, Nasmyth manufactured more than 100 steam locomotives, many small high-pressure steam engines, and a variety of pumps, hydraulic presses, and other machines. At the age of 48 he retired from the foundry in order to devote himself to his hobby, astronomy.

He was happily married for 50 years, until his death. They had no children.

He died 7 May 1890, London.

Link to Wikipedia biography


Source Notes

Taeger quotes Lescaut qouting his Autobiography.

In chaper 4 of his autobiography: "I was born on the morning of the 19th of August 1808, at my father's house No. 47 York Place, Edinburgh."


  • Vocation : Engineer : Mechanical
  • Notable : Extraordinary Talents : Other Extraordinary (for mechanics)
  • Notable : Famous : First in Field
  • Notable : Famous : Founder/ originator (inveted the steam hammer)