Michael Smith tells the fascinating story of the inventors, entrepreneurs and artisans who contributed to the Industrial revolution in Derbyshire as well as later developments in aviation and chemical and nuclear engineering.
Derbyshire played an important part in the history of Britain's industrial development. The Romans mined lead here and from medieval times coal mining, iron working and the manufacture of pottery were all important.
The Silk Mill, built at Derby in 1722, has a good claim to being Britain's first factory and in 1771, at Cromford, Richard Arkwright created a system of industrial production, which was copied throughout the world.
With the coming of the railways Derby became an important manufacturing centre. By the twentieth century a number of engineering firms such as Rolls Royce had established themselves.
He describes the development of well-known industrial enterprises as diverse as Crown Derby, the Midland Railway, Offiler's Brewery, Rolls-Royce, Bemrose, the Butterley Company and Toyota as well as many others.
About the Author
Michael Smith was born and educated in Derby. After commercial experience with a national group of electrical wholesalers he trained to be a teacher at Bishop Lonsdale College. He retired as Vice-Principal of Castle Donington Community College in 2005.
His academic qualifications include a BA (Hons) from the Open University, a Master's degree from Nottingham University and a specialist qualification in local history from the University of Keele.
A successful author, with several previous books on the East Midlands to his credit, he also worked as a lecturer in local history for the WEA and Nottingham University.