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Herbert Arnaud Taylor

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Herbert Arnaud Taylor (1841-1915), senior partner in Clark Forde, Taylor and Erskine-Murray


1916 Obituary [1]

HERBERT ARNAUD TAYLOR was born in August 1841 and died on the 23rd December, 1915, at the age of 74 years.

He was educated privately and passed into the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich, obtaining his commission as Lieutenant in the Royal Engineers in 1862.

Resigning his commission he became a pupil of the late Mr. Latimer Clark in 1867. In this way his career as a civil engineer was begun, his main work being connected with the design, manufacture, and laying of submarine cables.

At the time of his death he was senior partner in the firm of Clark, Forde, Taylor and Erskine-Murray, and in connection with his firm he acted as engineer to the majority of the submarine cable companies.

The first important work of this nature upon which he was engaged was the Persian Gulf Cable of 1868, Latimer Clark being the engineer appointed by the British Government to carry out the operations. Subsequently he acted as engineer for the laying of the 1873 and 1874 Anglo-Atlantic cables and for many of the Eastern and Associated Companies' cables in the East and on the African coast. Indeed, his whole life and interests were devoted to the subjects intimately connected with submarine cables. He was instrumental in the development of duplex working on cables, the introduction of automatic transmission on cable circuits, and later, in association with Mr. S. G. Brown, in the invention of the drum cable-relay and magnetic shunt, both of which have contributed so largely to the improved working of long cables; in fact he was prominent in all the notable advances made in submarine cable work during the past 40 years.

He was a member of the British Association Committee for constructing and issuing practical standards for use in electrical measurements, and also of the Sub-Committee on Cables which was appointed by the Engineering Standards Committee. In connection with the standard of electromotive force, viz. Clark's standard cell, his investigations and experiments were undoubtedly of great value, and the assistance rendered was gratefully acknowledged by his colleague and partner Latimer Clark. In addition to the varied work entailed by his active participation in the cable enterprises entrusted to his firm, a large amount of interesting experimental work was carried out.

In 1899 he gave evidence before the Pacific Cable Committee, and afterwards his firm of Clark, Forde and Taylor were appointed engineers for the British and Colonial Governments, the cable being made and laid to the specifications for which he was in the main responsible.

He was elected a Member of the Institution in 1872 and served on the Council from 1897 to 1900.


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