EARLY ROADS AND MODES OF
Roads as agents of civilisation—Their important
uses—Ancient British trackways or ridgeways—The Romans and their
roads in Britain—Decay of the Roman roads—Early legislation relating
to highways—Roads near London—The Weald of Kent—Great Western
roads—Hollow ways or lanes—Roads on Dartmoor—in Sussex—at
EARLY MODES OF CONVEYANCE.
Riding on horseback the ancient mode of
travelling—Shakespeare's description of travelling in 'Henry
IV.'—Queen Elizabeth and her coach—Introduction of coaches or
waggons—Painful journeys by coach—Carriers in reign of James
I.—Great North Road in reign of Charles I.—Mace's description of
roads and travellers—stage-coaches introduced—Sobrière's account of
the Dover stage-coach—Thoresby's account of stage-coaches and
travelling—Roads and travelling in North Wales—Proposal to suppress
stage-coaches—Tediousness and discomforts of travelling by
coach—Pennant's account of the Chester and London stage—Travelling
on horseback preferred—The night coach—Highway robbers and
foot-pads—Methods of transport of merchandise—Pack-horse
convoys—Traffic between Lancashire and Yorkshire—Signs of the
MANNERS AND CUSTOMS INFLUENCED BY
THE STATE OF THE ROADS.
Restricted intercourse between districts—Local
dialects and customs thereby preserved—Camden's fear of travelling
into the barbarous regions of the North—Rev. Mr. Brome's Travels in
England—Old Leisure—Imperfect postal communication—Hawkers and
pedlars—Laying in stores for winter—Household occupations—Great
fairs of ancient times—Local fairs—Fair on Dartmoor—Primitive
manners of Dartmoor District.
ROADS AND TRAVELLING IN SCOTLAND
IN THE LAST CENTURY.
Poverty of Scotland—Backwardness of
agriculture—Idleness of the people—Andrew Fletcher's description of
Scotland—Slavery of colliers and salters—Improvements in agriculture
opposed—Low wages of the labouring population—State of the Lothians
and Ayrshire—Wretched state of the roads—Difficulty of communication
between districts—Coach started between Edinburgh and
Glasgow—Carriers' perils between Edinburgh and Selkirk—Dangers of
travelling in Galloway—Lawlessness of the Highlands—Picking and
lifting of cattle—Ferocity of population on the Highland
Border—Ancient civilisation of Scotland.
ROADS AND TRAVELLING IN ENGLAND TOWARDS
THE END OF LAST CENTURY.
Progress made in travelling by coach—Fast coaches
established—Bad state of the roads—Foreigners' accounts of
travelling in England—Herr Moritz's journey by the basket
coach—Arthur Young's descriptions of English roads—Palmer's mail
coaches introduced—The first 'Turnpike' roads—Turnpike riots—The
rebellion of 1745—Passing of numerous highway Acts—Road-making
thought beneath the dignity of the engineer.
JOHN METCALF, ROAD-MAKER.
Metcalf's boyhood—His blindness—His boldness—Becomes
a Musician—His travels—Journey on foot from London to
Harrogate—Joins the army as musician in the rebellion of
1745—Adventures in Scotland—Becomes travelling merchant and horse
dealer—Begins road-making—Builds a bridge—His extensive road
contracts in Yorkshire and Lancashire—Manner of making his
surveys—His skill in road-making—His last road—His death—Roads in
the south of England—Want of roads on Lincoln Heath—Land
lighthouses—Dunstan pillar—Rapid improvement in the
roads—Application of steam—Sydney Smith on improved facilities of
LIFE OF THOMAS TELFORD.
Eskdale—Langholm—Former lawlessness of the Border
population—Johnnie Armstrong—Border energy—Westerkirk—Telford's
birthplace—Glendinning—Valley of the Meggat—The "unblameable shepherd"—Telford's mother—Early years—"Laughing Tam"—Put to school—His
LANGHOLM—TELFORD A STONEMASON.
'Telford apprenticed to a stonemason—Runs
away—Re-apprenticed to a mason at Langholm—Building operations in
the district—Miss Pasley lends books to young Telford—Attempts to
write Poetry—Becomes village letter-writer—Works as a journeyman
mason—Employed on Langholm Bridge—Manse of Westerkirk—Poem of
'Eskdale'—Hews headstones and doorheads—Works as a mason at
Edinburgh—Study of architecture—Revisits Eskdale—His ride to London.
WORKING MASON IN LONDON, AND FOREMAN
Telford a working man in London—Obtains employment as
a mason at Somerset House—Correspondence with Eskdale
friends—Observations on his fellow-workmen—Proposes to begin
business, but wants money—Mr. Pulteney—Becomes foreman of builders
at Portsmouth Dockyard—Continues to write poetry—Employment of his
time—Prints letters to his mother.
SURVEYOR FOR THE COUNTY OF SALOP.
Superintends repairs of Shrewsbury Castle—Appointed
Surveyor for County of Salop—Superintends erection of new
gaol—Interview with John Howard—His studies in science and
literature—Poetical exercises—Fall of St. Chad's Church,
Shrewsbury—Discovery of the Roman city of Uriconium—Overseer of
felons—Mrs. Jordan at Shrewsbury—Telford's indifference to
music—politics, Paine's 'Rights of Man'—Reprints his poem of
FIRST EMPLOYMENT AS ENGINEER.
Advantages of mechanical training to an
engineer—Erects Montford Bridge—Erects St. Mary Magdalen Church,
Bridgenorth—Telford's design—Architectural tour—Bath—Studies in
British Museum—Oxford—Birmingham—Study of architecture—Appointed
Engineer to the Ellesmere Canal.
THE ELLESMERE CANAL.
Course of the Ellesmere Canal—Success of the early
canals—The Act obtained and working survey made—Chirk
Aqueduct—Pont-Cysylltau Aqueduct—Telford's hollow walls—His cast
iron trough at Pont-Cysylltau—The canal works completed—Revisits
Eskdale—Early impressions corrected—Tour in Wales—Conduct of
Ellesmere Canal navigation—His literary studies and compositions.
IRON AND OTHER BRIDGES.
Use of iron in bridge-building—Design of a Lyons
architect—First iron bridge erected at Coalbrookdale—Tom Paine's
iron bridge—Wear iron bridge, Sunderland—Telford's iron bridge at
Build. was—His iron lock-gates and turn-bridges—Projects a
one-arched bridge of iron over the Thames—Bewdley stone bridge—Tongueland
Bridge—Extension of Telford's engineering business—Literary
friendships—Thomas Campbell—Miscellaneous reading.
HIGHLAND ROADS AND BRIDGES.
Progress of Scotch agri culture—Romilly's
account—State of the Highlands—Want of roads—Use of the Cas-chrom—Emigration—Telford's
survey of Scotland—Lord Cockburn's account of the difficulties of
travelling the North Circuit—Parliamentary Commission of Highland
Roads and Bridges appointed—Dunkeld Bridge built—920 miles of new
roads constructed— Craigellachie Bridge—Travelling
facilitated—Agriculture improved—Moral results of Telford's Highland
contracts—Rapid progress of the Lowlands—Results of parish schools.
TELFORD'S SCOTCH HARBOURS.
Highland harbours—Wick and Pulteney Town—Columnar
pier work—Peterhead Harbour—Frazerburgh Harbour—Banff Harbour—Old
history of Aberdeen, its witch-burning and slave-trading—Improvement
of its harbour—Telford's design carried out—Dundee Harbour.
CALEDONIAN AND OTHER CANALS.
Canal projected through the Great Glen of the
Highlands—Survey by James Watt—Survey by Telford—Tide-basin at
Corpach—Neptune's Staircase—Dock at Clachnaharry—The chain of
lochs—Construction of the works—Commercial failure of the
canal—Telford's disappointment—Glasgow and Ardrossan Canal—Weaver
Navigation—Gotha Canal, Sweden—Gloucester and Berkeley, and other
canals—Harecastle Tunnel—Birmingham Canal—Macclesfield
Canal—Birmingham and Liverpool Junction Canal—Telford's pride in his
TELFORD AS A ROAD-MAKER.
Increase of road-traffic—Improvement of the main
routes between the principal towns—Carlisle and Glasgow
road—Telford's principles of road-construction—Macadam—Gartland
Crags Bridge—Improvement of the London and Edinburgh post
road—Communication with Ireland—Wretched state of the Welsh
roads—Telford's survey of the Shrewsbury and Holyhead road—Its
construction—Roads and railways—London and Shrewsbury post
road—Roads near London—Coast road, North Wales.
THE MENAI AND CONWAY SUSPENSION BRIDGES.
Bridges projected over the Menai Straits—Telford's
designs—Ingenious plan of suspended centering—Design of a suspension
bridge over the Mersey at Runcorn—Design of suspension bridge at
Menai—The works begun—The main piers—The suspension chains—Hoisting
of the first main chain—Progress of the works to completion—The
bridge formally opened—Conway Suspension Bridge.
DOCKS, DRAINAGE, AND BRIDGES.
Résumé of English engineering—General increase in
trade and population—The Thames—St. Katherine's Docks—Tewkesbury
Bridge—Gloucester Bridge—Dean Bridge, Edinburgh—Glasgow
Bridge—Telford's works of drainage in the Fens—The North Level—The
Nene Outfall—Effects of Fen drainage.
SOUTHEY'S TOUR IN THE HIGHLANDS.
Southey sets out to visit the Highlands in Telford's
company—Dunkeld—Works at Dundee Harbour—Bervie Harbour—Mitchell and
Gibbs—Aberdeen Harbour—Approach to Banff—Cullen Harbour—The Forces
road—Beauly Bridge—Bonar Bridge—Fleet Mound—Southey's description of
the Caledonian Canal and works—John Mitchell—Takes leave of
Telford—Results of Highland road-making.
TELFORD'S LATER YEARS-DEATH AND CHARACTER.
Telford's residence in London—Leaves the Salopian—First
President of Institute of Civil Engineers—Consulted by foreign
Governments as to roads and bridges—His views on railways—Failure
of health—Consulted as to Dover Harbour—Illness and death—His
character—His friends—Integrity—Views on moneymaking—Benevolence—Patriotism—His Will—Libraries in Eskdale supported by his bequests.
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
CAUSEWAY NEAR WHITBY
ON THE CALEDONIAN CANAL