Michael Loam

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Michael Loam (1797–1871) a Cornishman who invented the Man engine, a device to carry men up and down the shaft of a mine. He won the prize for this design, offered by the Royal Cornwall Polytechnic Society in 1834.

Inspired by German designs and constructed of a series of moving platforms, the Man Engine was finally erected at the Tresavean mine (owned by John Rogers), in Lanner near Redruth in 1842.

He was trained as an engineer at Wheal Abraham by Arthur Woolf.ODNB - E. I. Carlyle, ‘Woolf, Arthur (bap. 1766, d. 1837)’, rev. Philip Payton, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004

Michael Loam remained active in the metal mining and smelting industries in Cornwall and is noted as an investor in the Tamar Tin Smelting Company in 1863.D.B. Barton A History of Tin Mining and Smelting in Cornwall; 2nd edn (1969, reprinted 1989); Cornwall Books ISBN 1-871060-03-6


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