Dictionary of Irish Architects 1720 - 1940

Railway engineer. Joseph Hamilton Beattie was born on 12 May 1808, the son of GEORGE BEATTIE GEORGE BEATTIE , an architect and builder in the north of Ireland. He was apprenticed to his father and worked in the latter's business for several years. He left Ireland for England in 1835 to work under Joseph Locke, first as an assistant engineer on the Grand Junction railway and then, from 1837, on the London and Southampton Railway, which later became the London and South Western Railway. He remained with the latter company for the rest of his career; at first he superintended the laying of track and the construction of buildings; later he was also placed in charge of the rolling stock. He devised and patented many improvements in the efficiency and safety of rolling stock, and his systems for economizing on fuel consumption effected large savings for the London and South Western and were widely adopted, making him a rich man. He died on 18 October1871, leaving a wife and three sons, the second of whom succeeded him as locomotive engineer to the London and South Western Railway Company.


All information in this entry is from Min Proc ICE 33 (1871-2) Pt. 1, 204-6, which gives a more detailed account of his inventions and innovations.