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Hugh Unsworth McKie

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Hugh Unsworth McKie (1822-1907)

1857 Birth of son John Mckie

1907 Obituary [1]

We regret to have to announce the death of Hugh Unsworth McKie, M.Inst.C.E., in his eighty-fifth year, which took place on the 19th ult. at the house of his son, James McKie, M.Inst.C.E., at Spondon, Derbyshire.

Mr. McKie commenced his career at the town of Lancaster, having served his articles with Mr. Lamb, at Hay Car, near Lancaster, and was afterwards in partnership with his previous fellow·pupil, the late Mr. John Lawson, M.Inst.C.E. During their partnership they designed and carried out numerous water, sewerage, and railway works. . . [more]

1907 Obituary [2]

HUGH UNSWORTH McKIE died at Spondon, Derbyshire, on the 19th January, 1907, at the advanced age of 84. He had retired in 1898 from a professional career exceptionally full and varied, which he had pursued with unflagging energy and marked ability for a period of nearly 60 years.

Born at Garstang, near Lancaster, on the 16th May, 1822, he served his pupilage to Mr. William Lamb, a land surveyor and agent to the Duke of Hamilton.

Between 1844 and 1850 he engaged in private practice at Lancaster in partnership with Mr. John Lawson, and carried out sewerage and waterworks for Lancaster and other places, During this period, Mr. McKie also acted as Resident Engineer on part of the North Western railway and harbour works at Morecambe.

From 1850 to 1856 he was engaged under the late Sir Robert (then Mr.) Rawlinson, Past-President, on water-supply and sewerage works at Alnwick, Carlisle and North Shields, in the course of which he introduced several improvements in the design and method of laying sewers.

In 1856 he was appointed City Engineer and Surveyor of Carlisle, and held the appointment until 1860, at the same time carrying on private practice in partnership with his former pupil, the late Mr. James Mansergh, Past-President. Whilst at Carlisle, he designed and carried out, in addition to street improvements and other works, a sewage irrigation farm for the city and sewerage works for Rothbury and Silloth.

From 1860 to 1865 he was occupied in the preparation of parliamentary and working drawings for the Conway and Llanrwst Railway, subsequently acting as Contractor’s Engineer on its construction ; and later he superintended, in the same capacity, the setting out of a railway line and tramways in the south of France.

Between 1867 and 1876, in the North Wales district, where he had established a consulting practice, he was responsible for the extension of the harbour at Portmadoc, sewerage works for Portmadoc and other towns, and, jointly with the late Mr. Thomas Duncan, waterworks at Rhyl, St. Asaph and Abergele.

He was also concerned with Mr. C. E. Spooner in the location and construction of the North Wales narrow-gauge railways. During this period, also, he acted as Engineer for large Welsh slate quarries, and reported on other slate quarries at home and abroad. He likewise prepared plans for the Alexandra Palace Railway, and for the Berlin Westend waterworks, and acted as Resident Engineer on the main sewerage works of Southport.

In 1877 Mr. McKie was a second time appointed to the office of City Engineer and Surveyor of Carlisle, and retaining the appointment until 1889 he carried out a number of street improvements, designed and erected public slaughter-houses and other municipal buildings, laid out a public park and new cemeteries, and prepared a report and plans for the disposal of the sewage of the city. At the same time carrying on private practice outside the city boundaries, he was responsible for sewerage and waterworks at Netherby, Haltwhistle, Wetheral and Maryport, and flood-protection works on the River Nith above Dumfries.

Leaving Carlisle in 1889, Mr. McKie established a consulting practice in Westminster, and carried out water-supply works for Frimley and Farnborough, and was consulted on numerous other water and sewerage schemes. He retired from professional pursuits in 1898, at the age of 76, and during the remaining years of his life enjoyed a well-earned rest, continuing, however, up to the last to take an intelligent interest in everything affecting engineering science.

Mr. McKie was elected an Associate of The Institution on the 1st March 1859, was subsequently placed in the class of Associate Members, and was transferred to the class of Members on the 1st December, 1885.

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