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British Industrial History

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Louis Paschal Casella

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Louis Paschal Casella (1812-1897), scientific instrument maker and a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical, Geographical and Meteorological Societies and of Tagliabue and Casella and later Louis Casella and Co

1812 February 29th. Born in Edinburgh the son of Pasquale Casella, a teacher of painting, who had moved from near Como to Scotland at around this date.

Educated in Edinburgh

c.1835 he moved to London, where he was employed by the instrument maker Caesar Tagliabue, also an immigrant from Como.

1838 Married at Bloomsbury to Maria Louisa Tagliabue the daughter of Caesar Tagliabue

1838 Tagliabue took his son-in-law into partnership, changing the company's name to Tagliabue and Casella.

One of his principal scientific interests was in meteorology and he received wide acclaim for his development and production of first-class meteorological instruments.

1841 He was elected a member of the Meteorological Society of London

1844 following Tagliabue's death, Casella took over the running of the firm, buying out the interests of his sister-in-law, Antonia Marina Tagliabue, in 1845.

1848 Opened a shop in London making and marketing a wide range of meteorological, mathematical, optical, and philosophical instruments, and photographic apparatus. Obtained appointments to HRH Prince of Wales and to several government agencies.

Casella maintained contact with the scientific community through membership of learned societies.

1862 Became a fellow of the Royal Meteorological Society, by which time he had also joined the Royal Astronomical Society. He was also a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

The instruments for which Casella was most renowned were thermometers, and his name is associated with several designs, including a clinical thermometer based on the principle of the maximum thermometer, and the adaptation of a pressure gauge for the verification of thermometers to be used for determining deep-sea temperatures.

1871 Living at South Grove, St. Pancras: Louis P. Casella (age 56 born Scotland, Italian parentage), Scientific Instrument Maker. With his wife Marie L. Casella (age 48 born London) and their four children; Casermund S. Colgan (age 30 born London), Daughter and Widow; Louis M. Casella (age 27 born London), Clerk; Josephene J. Casella (age 22 born London); and Charles F. Casella (age 19 born London). Three servants.[1]

1874 Patent. '4219. To Louis Paschal Casella, of Holborn-bars, in the city of London, Scientific Instrument Maker, and Samuel George Denton, of the same place, Instrument Maker, in the employment of the said Louis Paschal Casella, for the invention of "an improved mercurial minimum and maximum thermometer."'[2]

Mid-1870s Commissioned construction of a new family home, The Lawns, in Highgate

1879 Casella bought a house for his daughter in neighbouring Finchley.

1890s the company went through some lean years, perhaps partly because of Casella's reluctance to loosen the reigns of control, despite his advancing years.

1897 April 23rd. Died in Highgate.

See Also


Sources of Information

  • Biography of Louis Casella, ODNB