Thomas Telford FRS, Scottish civil engineer, c 1810.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Engraving by William Holl after a portrait by Samuel Lane, c 1810. Thomas Telford (1757-1834) was responsible for some of the finest feats of civil engineering in the early 19th century. His Caledonian Canal was constructed between 1803-1823, and was followed by the remarkable Menai Suspension Bridge, spanning 579 feet (174 metres), 1819-1826, and St Katherine's Docks in London, 1824-1828. Telford was also an important road builder. He rebuilt the Shrewsbury to Holyhead road and the North Wales coast road between Chester and Bangor. In 1820 he became the first president of the Engineers' Institute. Published by John Murray of Albemarle Street, London, in 1861.