William Armstrong: Magician of the North
William George Armstrong was a visionary inventor, scientist and businessman who bestrode the 19th-century world like a colossus, bringing global renown to his Elswick works at Newcastle upon Tyne, which employed 25,000 people in the manufacture of hydraulic cranes, ships and armaments. He created Cragside in Northumberland, and planted in its grounds seven million trees; his guests at Cragside included the Shah of Persia, the King of Siam, the Prime Minister of China and two future British kings. Magician of the North is much more than the life of one man, however. It is the story of Britain at the height of empire, riding the crest of industrial and technological success. The Queen and the Prince Consort played a vital role in fostering the scientific ferment, but so did characters such as Michael Faraday, Charles Darwin and Thomas Huxley.
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Admiralty Allenheads Andrew Noble Armaments Armorer Donkin Armstrong gun Bamburgh Castle Bastable became breech-loading Bridge Britain British Brunel building built century Charles coal Cochrane Conte-Helm Cowen Cragside cranes cruiser death Debdon Durham early Egypt electricity Elswick employers engineering event experiments father feet fire firm gardens George Rendel hall Hamer History of Elswick hydraulic machinery ibid industrial interest inventions iron James Japan Japanese Jesmond Dene John Johnny labour Lady Armstrong Lake later launched letter Lit & Phil London Lord Armstrong Losh Low Walker manufacture Mawson Swan mechanical Meggie miles Mitchell National naval Navy Newcastle upon Tyne Newcastle’s Northumberland ordnance Ouseburn Prince projectile railway rifled river Rothbury Royal scientific Shaw ships Sir William Armstrong steam strong Stuart Rendel Thomas Sopwith took Tyneside Watson Watson-Armstrong Whitworth William George Armstrong wrote Sopwith yards