'Birthplace of the Locomotive', 1861.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Oil painting by William Lucas showing the celebrated railway engineer, George Stephenson (1781-1848), surrounded by his family and the symbols of his life's achievements - a colliery safety lamp, and his first steam locomotive - on the wagonway at Killingworth Colliery in Tyne and Wear. A largely self-educated man, Stephenson's early working life was spent as a brakesman and in collieries maintaining stationary engines. In 1813 he was commisioned to design his first steam locomotive, 'Blucher', for the Killingworth Colliery. Later, he became the engineer for the Stockton & Darlington Railway (1825), and the Liverpool & Manchester Railway (1829). He advised on the construction of many other English railways, hence his nickname 'the father of railways'. Dimensions: 164mm x 148mm.