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Abell, Sir Westcott Stile (1877–1961), naval architect and surveyor, was born on 16 January 1877 at Littleham in Devon, the first of the four sons of Thomas Abell, house painter and, later, builder and member of Exmouth council for over fifty years, and of his wife, ...

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Auld [née Christie], Susan Mary [known as Susan Denham Christie] (1915–2002), naval architect, was born on 10 January 1915 at 12 Northumberland Terrace, Tynemouth, Northumberland, the only daughter and younger child of John Denham Christie (d. 1950), naval architect and shipbuilder, and chairman of ...

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Baker, Sir Rowland (1908–1983), naval architect, was born on 3 June 1908 at Upchurch, Sittingbourne, Kent, the eldest son of Isaac Baker, a sailing bargee, and his wife, Lizzie Palmer. He had a brother and three sisters. Always top of the class in school and successful at sports, he became an apprentice at ...

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Philip Watts

revised by N. A. M. Rodger

Barnaby, Sir Nathaniel (1829–1915), naval architect, the eldest son of Nathaniel Barnaby, inspector of shipwrights at Sheerness Dockyard, and his wife, Anna (née Fowler), was born at Chatham on 25 February 1829. At the age of fourteen, Barnaby became a shipwright apprentice at ...

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Bauzá, Felipe (1764–1834), hydrographer, was born in Palma, Majorca, in the Spanish Balearic Islands. He entered the Spanish navy at the age of fifteen, and experienced active service as he rose through the ranks. His career as a hydrographer began under Tofi?o y Varela...

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Sir Francis Beaufort (1774–1857) by Stephen Pearce, 1855–6 ? National Maritime Museum, London, Greenwich Hospital Collection

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J. K. Laughton

revised by N. A. M. Rodger

Beaufort, Sir Francis (1774–1857), naval officer and hydrographer, was born on 27 May 1774 at Flower Hill, Navan, co. Meath, the second son of the Revd Daniel Augustus Beaufort (1739–1821), rector of Navan, a topographer and architect of some distinction, and his wife, ...

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Frederick William Beechey (1796–1856) by Stephen Pearce, 1850 ? National Portrait Gallery, London

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Beechey, Frederick William (1796–1856), naval officer and hydrographer, son of Sir William Beechey, RA (1753–1839), and his second wife, Anne Phyllis Beechey, née Jessop (1764–1833) [see under Beechey, Sir William], the miniature painter, was born on 17 February 1796. His brothers were ...

Article

J. K. Laughton

revised by Andrew Lambert

Belcher, Sir Edward (1799–1877), naval officer and hydrographer, was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia, on 27 February 1799, the second son of Andrew Belcher (1763–1841), a merchant in Nova Scotia who moved to England in 1811 and settled at Roehampton, Surrey, and his wife, ...

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Bentham, Samuel (1757–1831), naval architect and inventor, was born in London on 11 January 1757, the youngest of the seven children of Jeremiah Bentham (1712–1792), an attorney, and his wife, Alicia Woodward Whitehorne (d. 1759), the eldest daughter of Thomas Grove, an ...

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Samuel Bentham (1757–1831) by Henry Edridge, c. 1795–1800 ? National Portrait Gallery, London

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Biddlecombe, Sir George (1807–1878), naval officer and hydrographer, born at Portsea, Hampshire, on 5 November 1807, was the son of Thomas Biddlecombe of Sheerness Dockyard, who died on 12 September 1844. He was educated at Dr Neave's school, Portsea, and joined the merchant navy, in the ship ...

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Eustace Henry William Tennyson-D'Eyncourt

revised by Andrew Lambert

Biles, Sir John Harvard (1854–1933), naval architect, was born at Portsmouth on 6 January 1854, the third son of John Biles, an official at Portsmouth Dockyard, and his wife, Margaret, second daughter of William Groombridge, of Ernehill, Kent. His childhood was spent at ...

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Sir John Harvard Biles (1854–1933) by Bassano, 1921 ? National Portrait Gallery, London

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Billings, Joseph (1758–1806), explorer and hydrographer in Russia, was born in 1758 at Turnham Green, Middlesex, according to ship musters; parish church registers confirm the birth of Joseph, son of Thomas and Mary Billing, on 6 September 1758. Billings's signed Russian service record, however, gives 1761 as the year of his birth. Other sources indicate that ...

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Sir James Bird (1883–1946) by Walter Stoneman, 1946 ? National Portrait Gallery, London

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Bird, Sir James (1883–1946), naval architect and aircraft manufacturer, was born on 19 March 1883 in London, the second son of Samuel Bird, merchant, of East Cowes, Isle of Wight, and his wife, Freda. He was educated at Marlborough School, where he was a prefect, played in the hockey eleven, and captained the football fifteen. He next served an apprenticeship with ...

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Bishop, Richard Evelyn Donohue [Dick] (1925–1989), mechanical engineer and naval architect, was born on 1 January 1925 in Lewisham, London, the elder son (there were no daughters) of Norman Richard Bishop, chief accountant and director of Tar Residuals Ltd, and his wife, Dorothy Mary Wood...

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Brierly, Sir Oswald Walters (1817–1894), marine painter and naval engineer, was born at Chester on 19 May 1817, the son of Dr Thomas Brierly (d. in or before 1872), a physician and amateur artist. After schooling in Chester, he became a pupil at ...