John Basset (writer)

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John Basset (17 November 1791 – 4 July 1843) was a writer on Cornish mining. He was deeply interested in Cornish mining, mining technology and economics.

Born at Illogan in Cornwall, he published an article in 1840[1] drawing attention to the devices called "Man Engines" for mechanically raising and lowering mine workers up and down the mine-shaft, replacing many yards of ladders. These devices were known to operate in the Harz Mountains in Germany. The Royal Cornwall Polytechnic Society (which had published the paper), offered a prize for a version suitable for use in Cornish mines, which was won by Michael Loam.[2]

Basset was High Sheriff of Cornwall in 1837, and MP for Helston in 1840–41.[2]

He died at Boppard am Rhein, Germany, on 4 July 1843 aged 51.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ On the machinery used for raising miners in the Harz, Report of the Royal Cornwall Polytechnic Society, 1840 (pp. 59–62).
  2. ^ a b W. H. Tregellas, ‘Basset, John (1791–1843)’, rev. Philip Payton, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 accessed 16 Nov 2007

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Viscount Cantelupe
Member of Parliament for Helston
Succeeded by
Sir Richard Vyvyan, Bt