William George Armstrong, 1st Baron Armstrong

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Sir William George Armstrong

William George Armstrong, 1st Baron Armstrong (November 26 1810December 27 1900) was an English industrialist, the effective founder of the Armstrong Whitworth manufacturing empire.

Born at Newcastle upon Tyne, Armstrong was originally launched on a career in law. However, his major interest was in engineering. In 1840, he invented a hydraulic engine, following it up with other electrical and labour-saving devices, including the hydraulic crane. In 1847, he founded the Elswick works at Newcastle, to produce various electrical devices and engines. He built the Swing Bridge to enable larger ships access to his works. The Armstrong breech-loading gun was one of his more successful developments, and in 1882 the works also began building ships. In 1897, the firm merged with Joseph Whitworth & Co, later becoming Vickers Armstrong Ltd.

Lord Armstrong purchased Bamburgh Castle as one of his residences, and also built the Victorian extravaganza, Cragside, now a National Trust property, further inland at Rothbury, Northumberland. The latter was the first house in Britain to be entirely powered by hydro-electricity, generated by a system of Armstrong's own design.de:William George Armstrong

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