The Metallurgic Age

The Victorian Flowering of Invention and Industrial Science


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About the Book

Throughout history, the use and workmanship of metal has been closely associated with the very notion of civilization. Never was this connection more apparent than during the Metallurgic Age, which coincided with England’s Victorian era and the Gilded Age in America. This era, covering essentially the 19th century, saw unprecedented advances as a passion for technology and learning fueled a period of discovery and of practical application of the sciences.
This work explores in depth the connection between Victorian creativity and the advance of engineering. It examines this age of accelerated invention and the evolution of new fields such as metallurgy, automotive engineering, aerodynamics and industrial arts. Numerous unsung inventors—many of whom lost one or more of the frequent patent battles that peppered the era—are remembered here along with the concept of the meta-invention. The result is a revealing look at how metallurgy permeated all areas of Victorian life and affected changes from the kitchen to the battlefield.

About the Author(s)

Quentin R. Skrabec, Jr., an international expert in management, manufacturing and globalization, is the author of numerous books on American industrial history, capitalism and notable business leaders. He lives in Maumee, Ohio.

Bibliographic Details

Quentin R. Skrabec, Jr.
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 259
Bibliographic Info: photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2006
pISBN: 978-0-7864-2326-2
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1113-6
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Introduction      1

1. The Metallurgic Age      7

2. Victorian Incubators—The Great Exhibitions      25

3. Scientific Romances and the Materials Revolution      38

4. Victorian Iron—The Foundation of the Age      51

5. William Kelly—The Inventor of the Bessemer Process      63

6. Victorian Wars and Technology      84

7. Trains and Boats      103

8. Aluminum—Victorian Gold      120

9. Basic Victorian Electricity      130

10. Victorian Metallurgy      147

11. Victorian Toolmaking      161

12. The Victorian Concept of Management      179

13. The Copper Legend—Thomas Edison      193

14. War of the Currents      208

15. The Automobile      223

Epilogue      229

Chapter Notes      241

Bibliography      244

Index      247