William Douglass (engineer)

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For other people with the same name, see William Douglass.

William Tregarthen Douglass (1857–1913) was an engineer, from a lighthouse engineering family. He was a consulting engineer for lighthouse construction for several governments around the world.[1] His father was Sir James Nicholas Douglass, and his uncle William and his grandfather Nicholas were also famous in lighthouse construction.


William T. Douglass was Assistant Engineer to Thomas Edmond in the construction of the fourth Eddystone Lighthouse and then superintendent of work after Edmond was called to other work. William T. Douglass supervised the whole work of fitting up the internal arrangements of the new Eddystone LIghthouse, as well as dismantling and removing the upper portion of Smeaton's Tower, leaving the foundation intact.[2]

One of William Douglass's most impressive achievements was his supervision of the renovation and reinforcement of the Bishop Rock Lighthouse.[3][4]

Consulting engineer to the Governments of Western Australia, New South Wales, and Victoria. Inspecting engineer to the RNLI. In 1899 he was selected by the Secretary of State for India to inspect and report on the whole of the lighthouses of India and Burma.

Member of the Institution of Civil Engineers, and a Fellow of King's College, London. He died on 10 August 1913 following a boating accident at Dartmouth.



  1. ^ "DOUGLASS, William Tregarthen". Who's Who. Vol. 59. 1907. p. 502. 
  2. ^ Douglass, William Tregarthen (1884). "The New Eddystone Lighthouse, with Discussion". Minutes of proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers. vol. 75, part 1. London: Institution of Civil Engineers. pp. 20–60. 
  3. ^ Nicholson, Christopher P. (1995). Rock lighthouses of Britain: the end of an era?. Latheronwheel, Caithness, Scotland: Whittles Publishing. pp. 113–126. ISBN 1-870325-41-9. 
  4. ^ Douglass, William Tregarthen (1892). "The Bishop Rock Light Houses". Minutes of proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers. vol. 108, part 2. London: Institution of Civil Engineers. pp. 207–220. 

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