1756-1764

1756
Erasmus Darwin moved to Lichfield to practice medicine.

1758
William Small was appointed Professor of Natural Philosophy at William and Mary College, Virginia, where he taught Thomas Jefferson. Erasmus Darwin met Matthew Boulton. Benjamin Franklin visited Birmingham and met Boulton, Darwin and Whitehurst.

1759
Beginning of the construction of the Bridgewater Canal by James Brindley.

1761
Joseph Priestley joined the staff at Warrington Academy. Opening of the Bridgewater Canal. Its economic success encourages canal development in the Midlands. John and Charles Wood at Wednesbury took out patents in 1761 and 1763 for converting pig iron into wrought iron.

1763
Coventry was the first town in the West Midlands to secure an act establishing town commissions to collect a rate for better paving, lighting and cleaning. The Treaty of Paris with France confirmed Britain’s colonial dominance in Canada and India. James Hargreaves invented the Spinning Jenny.

Articles in this time period

4118-0

“Allin’s Cabinet of Curiosities”

The site of the Municipal Hall, corner of Congreve Street Old and New Birmingham: A History of… read more »

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4038-0

A Biography of Robert Bage

Image: The Mill House, Elford, near Lichfield. The home of Robert Bage in the late 18th century. Robert… read more »

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3749-0

A Cottage on Fire

Joseph Wright of Derby (1734-1797), Oil on Canvas

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3734-0read more »
4785-0

A Perspective View of Ludlow Castle for the European Magazine, and article on The Late Storms

Watton’s Newspaper Cuttings, Volume 5 Image from: Shropshire Archives

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4533-0

A Philosopher, Conduit Street

Image from: Joseph Priestley Collection by Samuel Timmins, Birmingham City Archives.

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4-0

A Portrait of Anna Seward

Anna Seward: “Swan of Lichfield” Born in Derbyshire in 1742, Anna Seward was the daughter of Thomas… read more »

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2117-0

A Portrait of Dr William Small

Pencil sketch of Dr William Small, member of the Lunar Society and a prominent physician in Birmingham during… read more »

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7-0

A Portrait of Dr. Erasmus Darwin

Erasmus Darwin: Doctor, Inventor, Poet and Educationalist Erasmus Darwin was born at Elston, near Nottingham, in 1731… read more »

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16-0

A Portrait of Dr. William Small

William Small: Teacher, Scientist and Mentor William Small was born in Forfarshire, Scotland, in 1734, the son… read more »

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19-0

A Portrait of Dr. William Withering

William Withering: Physician, Botanist and Mineralogist In 1741, William Withering was born at Wellington, Shropshire, the only… read more »

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945-0

A Portrait of James Keir

James Keir: Chemist, Geologist, Industrialist and Inventor James Keir was born in Stirlingshire, Scotland in 1735. He… read more »

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17-0

A Portrait of James Watt

James Watt: Inventor James Watt was born in Greenock, Scotland in 1736. His father was an instrument… read more »

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3724-0

A Portrait of Jedediah Strutt

Jedediah Strutt: Industrialist and Philanthopist Text: Olga Baird Jedediah Strutt (1726-1797) was one of leading pioneer industrialists of… read more »

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3722-1

A Portrait of John Whitehurst

John Whitehurst: Clockmaker, Engineer and Geologist John Whitehurst was born in Congleton, Cheshire in 1713, the son… read more »

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15-0

A Portrait of Rev. Joseph Priestley

Joseph Priestley: Scientist, Philosopher and Reformer Born into a Yorkshire wool manufacturing family in 1733, Priestley was… read more »

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12-0

A Portrait of Richard Lovell Edgeworth

Richard Lovell Edgeworth: Inventor, Educator and Reformer In 1744, Edgeworth was born in Bath into a landowning… read more »

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4654-0

A Portrait of Thomas Telford: Civil Engineer

Image: Portrait of Thomas Telford (1757-1834). Frontispiece of Atlas to the Life of Thomas Telford, Civil Engineer containing eighty-three… read more »

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4001-0

A Portrait of William Murdoch

William Murdock: The Incomparable Mechanic William Murdoch (1754 -1839) was one of most creative and least known… read more »

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4547-0

A Sorry End: The Priestley Riots of 1791

Image: Ticket for the French Revolution Dinner, Birmingham 14 July 1791. The Dinner began the chain of events… read more »

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4782-0

A View of Shrewsbury from the South-West

Watton’s Newspaper Cuttings, Volume 5 Image from: Shropshire Archives

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4435-0

A Window on the World: Richard Greene’s Museum of Curiosities in Lichfield

Image: “An East View of the Cathedral Church of St Chad’s & Close of Lichfield; Taken from Stow-pool… read more »

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4779-0

Advertisement: Batty’s Circus, Shrewsbury, including the ascent of Mr Hughes on his head on top of a balloon

Watton’s Newspaper Cuttings, Volume 4 Image from: Shropshire Archives

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4714-0

Advertisement: Charles Radenhurst, New Royal Hotel, New Street, Birmingham

Image from: William Hawkes Smith, Birmingham and its Vicinity as a Manufacturing and Commercial District (London and Birmingham, 1836), Local… read more »

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4716-0

Advertisement: Iohn Traies, Boot and Shoe Manufacturer, Birmingham

Image from: William Hawkes Smith, Birmingham and its Vicinity as a Manufacturing and Commercial District (London and Birmingham, 1836), Local… read more »

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4730-0

Advertisement: J. Darwen and Son, Saddlers, Harness Makers, Bridle Cutters, etc, Birmingham

Image from: William Hawkes Smith, Birmingham and its Vicinity as a Manufacturing and Commercial District (London and Birmingham, 1836), Local… read more »

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4722-0

Advertisement: Kendall and Son, Perfumers, Cabinet Case Makers, and Importers of Foreign Fancy Merchandise, London

Image from: William Hawkes Smith, Birmingham and its Vicinity as a Manufacturing and Commercial District (London and Birmingham, 1836), Local… read more »

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4713-0

Advertisement: Messenger and Sons, Manufacturers of Chandeliers, Tripods and Lamps

Image from: William Hawkes Smith, Birmingham and its Vicinity as a Manufacturing and Commercial District (London and Birmingham, 1836), Local… read more »

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4769-0

Advertisement: Mrs Graham’s Ascent: the first ascent of the Only English Female Aeronaut

Watton’s Newspaper Cuttings, Volume 2 Image from: Shropshire Archives

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4783-0

Advertisement: Opening of Hughes’ s Great Mammoth Equestrian Establishment, Shrewsbury

Watton’s Newspaper Cuttings, Volume 5 Image from: Shropshire Archives

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4721-0

Advertisement: Radclyffes and Co, General Printers and Stationers, Birmingham

Image from: William Hawkes Smith, Birmingham and its Vicinity as a Manufacturing and Commercial District (London and Birmingham, 1836), Local… read more »

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4712-0

Advertisement: Sir Edward Thomason, Birmingham, Manufacturer of Articles

Image from: William Hawkes Smith, Birmingham and its Vicinity as a Manufacturing and Commercial District (London and Birmingham, 1836), Local… read more »

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4711-0

Advertisement: Sir Edward Thomason, Vice Consul and Knight Chevalier

Image from: William Hawkes Smith, Birmingham and its Vicinity as a Manufacturing and Commercial District (London and Birmingham, 1836), Local… read more »

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4731-0

Advertisement: Stock and Sharp, Glass and Lead Warehouse, Birmingham

Image from: William Hawkes Smith, Birmingham and its Vicinity as a Manufacturing and Commercial District (London and Birmingham, 1836), Local… read more »

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4784-0

Advertisement: The Last Appearance of Mr Harper, Black singer and comedian

Watton’s Newspaper Cuttings, Volume 5 Image from: Shropshire Archives

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10-0

An “ever-open door”: Erasmus Darwin and Lichfield

Samuel Johnson described Lichfield as a “city of philosophers” where Erasmus Darwinwas the most prominent of an outstanding group of… read more »

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4526-0

Apparatus

Image from: Joseph Priestley Collection by Samuel Timmins, Birmingham City Archives.

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4527-0

Apparatus

Image from: Joseph Priestley Collection by Samuel Timmins, Birmingham City Archives.

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4773-0

Article from The Salopian Journal, 10 October 1838, on Mrs Graham’s ascent in a balloon

Watton’s Newspaper Cuttings, Volume 2 Image from: Shropshire Archives

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4456-0read more »
3747-0

Belisarius receiving Alms (1775)

Image: Joseph Wright of Derby (1734-1797), Pen, ink and brown wash over pencil. Image from: Derby Museum & Art… read more »

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1366-0

Brindley’s Croft

The birthplace of James Brindley was born at Tunstead, near Buxton in Derbyshire. Samuel Smiles, Lives of… read more »

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2301-0

Cast-iron Aqueduct, Cromford Derbyshire

The aqueduct carried water from the Greyhound Pond and Cromford Sough to power the water wheels of… read more »

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4923-0

Charles Bage, the Flax Industry and Shrewsbury’s Iron-Framed Mills

Image: View of Ditherington Mill in April 2003, the world’s first completely iron-framed building. The factory was built… read more »

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4507-0

Chemical Philosophers of the Present Day: Dr Priestley

Image from: Joseph Priestley Collection by Samuel Timmins, Birmingham City Archives.

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529-0

Colebrook Dale

Image:The Iron Bridge, near Coalbrookdale Shropshire. Thomas Harral, Picturesque Views of the Severn (1824). Harral’s views were largely based… read more »

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3738-0

Cottage in Needwood Forest

Joseph Wright of Derby (1734-1797). Image from: Derby Museum & Art Gallery

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2317-0

Cromford: A Factory Community

Image: Housing in North Street, Cromford, Derbyshire. Richard Arkwright built houses to attract people to work in his… read more »

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