John Kendrew (inventor)
John Kendrew was a Darlington optician who invented the process of the mechanical spinning of flaxen yarn in a flax mill. He had a mill for grinding glass at Low Mill at Darlington on the River Skerne. He arranged for Thomas Porthouse, who as a clockmaker was more mechanically skilled, to build the machine, which was installed in his mill. Together they patented this machine. They then each built their own mill Kendrew's being near Houghton, presumably Houghton le Spring on the same river. They went on to licence the technology to others, so that most other flax mills were technological descendants of these.
- A. J. Wardey, The linen trade: ancient and modern (1864; repr. 1967), 690-92.
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