Lot 705: Smeaton John



2015-07-10 15:43:15

Lot 705: Smeaton John: (1724-1792) English Civil Engineer Who Was Responsible For The Design Of Bridges, Canals, Harbours And Lighthouses Including The Eddystone Lighthouse (1755-59). A.L.S., J. Smeaton, Two Pages, 4To, Austhorpe, 22Nd August 1786, To Dr. [Charles] Blagden At Whitby. Smeaton States That He Has Received A Minute Of The Longitude And Latitude Of York, Remarking That He Looks Upon It €˜As The Best Determination We Have Had: And York Being Pretty Central To The County; And So Far As I Have Had Occasion To Examine Jeffereys Large Map, Being A Reasonably Exact Topographical Survey, It Immediately Occurred To Me That The Longitude Of This Place Might Be Very Well Compared With What Had Resulted From Former Determinations: The Best Of Which Was, As I Told You, One That Had Been Put Down In The Connoisance De Temps Deduced From A Very Accurate Observation I Had Of The Suns Eclipse The Morning After The Transn. Of Venus Of 1769, Which Was 5€™, 43€ €˜ , Continuing To Provide His Calculations For Austhorpe And Explaining That They Agree Better With His Own Observations Than Those Of The French, Commenting On The Effect That The Recent Weather Has Had On His Observations, €˜I Kept My Letter Open In Hopes To Have Got A Transit Of The Sun; To Have Ascertained The Going Of The Clock Since The 16Th And This Morning Afforded Some Transitory Gleams….And Then Came On A Great Black Cloud….€™ In A Lengthy Postscript Smeaton Refers To His Correspondent’S Visit To The Pier And Works At Whitby, Where He Should Meet Mr. Pickernell, The Engineer, Remarking €˜I Recommended Him To The Trustees Upon The Merit Of His Having Acquitted Himself, Not Only To My Own, But Every Ones Satisfaction, As Resident Surveyor To My Unfortunate Work Of Henham Bridge’ And Further Writing €˜Ruswarps Mill Near Whitby Has Been Esteemed One Of The Most Curious In The Kingdom; It Was Built About The Time I First Begun To Direct Works Of That Kind, And Is One Of The Best Specimens Of The State Of The Art, About The Year 1754: It Has Many Very Ingenious Contrivances About It: But It Is Totally Deficient In That Branch Of The Art, That I Have Principally Cultivated; That Is The Art Of Producing The Greatest Degree Of Power, With A Given Quantity Of Water And Fall’. With Integral Address Leaf Post Marked At Ferry Bridge And Bearing A Good Red Wax Seal (Small Area Of Paper Loss Where Broken). A Letter Of Excellent Content. Vg Charles Blagden (1748-1820) British Physician And Scientist, Secretary Of The Royal Society 1784-97. International Autograph Auctions' Autograph Auction July 2015 Saturday, 18th July 2015 Estimate: £200 - 300
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