Thomas Botfield

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Thomas Botfield FRS (14 February 1762 – 17 January 1843) was an English metallurgist, geologist, magistrate and deputy-lieutenant of Shropshire, and inventor of a method of smelting and making iron using the principle of "gas flame or heated air in the blast of furnaces".[1] Botfield's 1828 patent seems to have anticipated most of the elements of the blast furnace as it was used in the 1830s and 1840s.[2]

His father was Thomas Botfield (1738–1801) who acquired a fortune from collieries and iron manufacture. Thomas Botfield, the younger, was educated at the endowed school of Cleobury Mortimer. He worked as a colliery manager and married in 1800. He was elected F.R.S. on 18 April 1833.

He was one of the original members of the Geological Society, and early a fellow of the Society of Arts. He was also a Fellow of the Royal Society, and of the Horticultural Society, a member of the Royal Institution, and of the Royal Geographical and Agricultural Societies. He was a frequent attendant at the meetings of the British Association, and in his visits to the metropolis rarely missed a meeting of any society to which he belonged.[1]

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  1. ^ a b "Thomas Botfield, Esq. F.R.S." The Gentleman's Magazine. 174: 658–659. June 1843.
  2. ^ Belford, Paul (2012). "Hot blast iron smelting in the early 19th century: a re-appraisal" (PDF). Historical Metallurgy. 46 (1): 32–44.[dead link]

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