The Doric Columns
June 1814 – 8 March 1896) was a Scottish Civil
Marine Engineer, James Abernethy's (1814-96) cousin, also called James Abernethy (1809-1879), was an Iron Founder based in Aberdeen, who was responsible for the production of a number of bridges in Scotland. He also had a son called James, and the Foundry business continued until the middle of the 20th century.
James Abernethy & Co Ltd, Ferryhill Foundry, Aberdeen, who made Invercauld Bridge and 2 others on the Dee, at Polhollick and Cambus O' May
Granite Turning Lathe
James Abernethy was born in 1809, one of the 3 sons and 5 children of James Abernethy, iron-founder and his wife Anne Harvey. The elder Abernethy had established an iron founding and sawmilling business in partnership with George and Robert Tower of Ferryhill and Alexander Gibbon, an Advocate in Aberdeen. Abernethy Sr., may have been assisted in the business by his brother George James junior who was educated at Aberdeen Grammar School and Marischal College, and served his articles with his father. He also gained experience as a journeyman in Manchester, Birmingham and London. He returned to the family firm at Ferryhill and subsequently, assisted by his brothers, gradually took over running the business, James Abernethy & Co. The business of the firm was quite varied at the beginning and included machinery for mills and processing machinery for colonial tea and sugar plantations and for guano extraction. Although the firm tried to dispense with the mill-wrighting side of the business, it still made mill machinery throughout the 19th century. However after 1850 the main business was Bridges, generally to the designs of others, like Alexander Gibb and James Willet. Abernethy & Co provided the expertise as fabricators of cast and wrought iron structures. The bridges were generally for the Great North of Scotland Railway. By 1882 the GNSR had more than 300 under-bridges with cast-iron beams as well as many arch and lattice-girder bridges. In 1841 Abernethy married Isabella Bathia Wyllie, the daughter of an Aberdeen bookseller. The couple had two sons. Abernethy was elected an Associate of the Institution of Civil Engineers in 1866. He died in 1879, his practice being continued by his sons, James Washington Abernethy, born 1845, and David Wyllie Abernethy, born 1848. The business continued until the mid-20th century. - James Slight
Lathe probably made 1881
Public footbridge, Polhollick: this suspension footbridge is situated 2 miles West of Ballater, and built in 1892. Like that at Cambus O' May it is a gift of Mr Gordon. Set in a more open situation, it has been built a little more sturdily, and with less charm. The lattice cables are finished with a tooth-edged cross girder above a metal arch. The cables, of steel rope, are stayed by cross bars which give a ladder-like effect from a distance; the abutments are lozenge-shaped. This short bridge carries a footpath across the River Dee to the NE of Polhollick farmstead. The location assigned to this record defines the centre of the span.
Suspension bridge of wire rope and truss deck type: Built 1892 by James Abernethy and Co., Ferryhill Foundry, Aberdeen, engineers. Lattice-girder pylons, wire-rope cables, rod suspenders, lattice-girder span. Span about 170 ft (52m).
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