Thomas Oliver (engineer)
Thomas Oliver was an engineer who invented the first machine for forging bolts in England. This used a treadle-operated hammer which was called an Oliver hammer or English Oliver, after the inventor. Production of bolts using this machinery started in Darlaston in Staffordshire in 1838. Similar machines were still being using in the Black Country in 1979, at Lench's Oliver Shop, making special bolts to order. Using such a hammer could be strenuous work, stamping on the treadle to force the red hot iron into the die over a thousand times a day. Despite the physical strain and injury which resulted, even women laboured in this way during the 19th century.
- Franklin Day Jones (1928), Handbook Encyclopedia of Engineering, p. 127
- E.J.Wiley (1926), "The Development of Bolt and Nut Forging", Machinery and Production Engineering, 29: 430
- Lench’s Oliver Shop, Black Country Living Museum
- "Annotations.", The Lancet, 1: 498, 541, 1889, doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(00)49982-4
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