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Early Engines Conference – Call for papers

The inaugural International Early Engines Conference (IEEC hereafter) will be held from 11th-13th May, 2017. The purpose of the conference is to provide a forum for presentation and discussion of new research into heat engines prior to 1812.

The IEEC will be hosted at The Ironworks, Elsecar, South Yorkshire, part of the Elsecar Heritage Centre, home to the preserved 1795 ‘Great Engine’ – the only Newcomen-type atmospheric beam engine in the world to have remained in its original location and recently conserved and reinterpreted thanks to a Heritage Lottery Fund Project steered by Barnsley Museums.

Twenty papers, each of thirty minutes duration are planned, plus visits to local engine houses and related sites. Catering will be provided and relevant publications will be on sale by the sponsoring organisations.

Delegate costs are likely to be around £100/person and will offer options for partners and day tickets. Conference transactions will be published as a themed edition of the International Journal for the History of Engineering and Technology.

Papers already proposed (to be confirmed)

  • An account of Newcomen engines preceding the 1712 Dudley Engine.
  • Excavation and research conclusions from the 1791 Watergrove Engine House.
  • Surveying and researching the UKs oldest complete Engine House at Brislington.
  • William Brown, Tyneside’s Master Engine Builder 1745-1770.
  • Building the early boilers, trials and errors.
  • Was the 1712 Dudley Engine moved there from somewhere else?
  • Morton’s Travels, an account of Henry Ford’s engine purchases.
  • Revisiting the history of the Pentrich Engine.
  • Excavating, conserving and interpreting the 1791 Serridge Engine site.
  • Conservation of the 1795 Elsecar Great Engine

Partners and Sponsors

The facilities and support will be provided by Barnsley Museums, Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council. The Newcomen Society has agreed to be lead sponsor and the Historical Metallurgy Society, the Northern Mine Research Society (NMRS) and the South Gloucestershire Mine Research Group (SGMRG) have also agreed to provide sponsorship

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