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Georgian Inventions

There were many important inventions made and discovered during the Georgian period:
  • Abraham Darby invented cast iron which could flow into moulds when heated. This made it much easier and cheaper to make complex metal shapes like iron rails for steam trains to run on or large structures like the famous Iron Bridge crossing the River Severn in Shropshire.
Iron Bridge
  • Sir Humphry Davy invented the Davy lamp in 1815. It had a fine metal mesh which would protect the flame inside from causing an explosion when put near dangerous gases like methane found in coal mines.
  • The first power loom was built by Edmumd Carwright in 1785. It allowed textile making to be done much faster than if a human had done the same work and was soon used in over 250,000 machines in England.
Mule spinning machine at Quarry Bank Mill
  • Josiah Wedgwood was born in Stoke-on-Trent and became famous for the industrialisation (making things in factories, not workshops) of pottery
1780 Wedgewood dish (UBC)
  • Robert Peel (born in Bury) established the Metropolitan Police Force for London in 1829. Although unpopular at first, the 1,000 constables (nicknamed 'Bobbies') proved very successful in cutting crime and by 1857 all citities in the UK were obliged to form their own police forces.
Peel statue Bury - - 186004
  • Michael Faraday made the first electric motor in 1821. It is thanks to his many experiments with electric power that electricity became so usable in techology.
  • In 1759, John Harrison devised the first ever clock to keep the time exactly. From Greenwich Mean Time, sailors could then determine how many hours they were before or after that time and thus able to determine their longitude (degrees East to West position) on the globe.
Harrison's Chronometer H5

By the end of the Georgian period, factories, blast-furnaces and mines were taking over large areas of the British landscape.

Industrial cities like Birmingham (nicknamed 'the Black Country') soon became incredibly smoky and contributed to quite an unhealthy environment to work in.

Black Country – Borinage