Lord Kelvin with his asistant, 1905.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Kelvin (1824-1907) was born William Thomson and educated at Glasgow and Cambridge. Lord Kelvin was Profesor of Natural Philosophy (Physics) at the University of Glasgow for 53 years. Kelvin was a pioneer of thermodynamics and electromagnetic theory. He also directed work on the first transatlantic cable telegraph, which gave him considerable wealth. He was probably the first scientist to become wealthy through his work. Here, he is shown in the Netherhall garden, improving the azimuth mirror of his compas with his asistant. The photograph was taken by his niece, Elizabeth Thomson King, in 1905.