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British Industrial History

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Peter Burt

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Peter Burt (c1857-1944) of Argyll Motors. Also of Acme Wringers, Acme Domestic Equipment, Acme Machine Co, Acme Manufacturing Co, Acme Engine Co and Burt and Morison. Also Peter Burt and Co. Also part-patentee of the Burt-McCollum sleeve-valve engine.

1861 Living at 48 Abercrombie St., Bridgeton, Glasgow: Joseph Burt (age 27 subject American British), Engine Fitter Journeyman. With his wife Barbra Burt (age 27 born Campsie, Stirlingshire) and their three children; Peter Burt (age 4 born Glasgow); Cathrine Burt (age 2 born Glasgow); and Thomas Burt (age 2 Months born Glasgow).[1]

1871 Living at 48 Abercrombie St., Bridgeton, Glasgow: Joseph Burt (age 37 born 'J, Pictore American B'), Master Engineer 6 Men & 2 Boys. With his wife Barbara Burt (age 37 born Campais, Stirlingshire) and their three children; Peter Burt (age 14 born Glasgow); Lilias Burt (age 8 born Glasgow); and Barbara Burt (age 5 born Glasgow).[2]

1877 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, 52 Ardgowan Street, representative for D. Nicholson, The Palace Brewery, Edinburgh, in the counties of Lanark, Ayr, Dumfries and Dumbarton.'[3]

1880 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, 123 Allison Street, Garnethill, representative for D. Nicholson, The Palace Brewery, Edinburgh, in the counties of Lanark, Ayr, Dumfries and Dumbarton.'[4]

1880 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, (of Burt and Morison), ho; 80 Bellgrove St.[5]

1881 June 2nd. Married Jeannie Wotherspoon

1885 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, (of the "Acme" Machine Co,) house, 42 Roslea drive'[6]

1886 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, (of the "Acme" Machine Co,) house, 42 Roslea drive'[7]

1886/87 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, 42 Roslea drive, Weighing Machine Manufacturer.'[8]

1891 Living at Wardie Villa, Bothwell: Peter Burt McQuater (age 36 born Glasgow), Gas Engine Maker. With his wife Jeanie McQuater (age 34 born Glasgow) and their four sons: Joseph S. McQuater (age 9 born Glasgow); Thomas W. McQuater (age 7 born Glasgow); George P McQuater (age 4 born Glasgow); and John W McQuater (age 1 born Bothwell). Two servants. Note: Probably a transcription error re surname - only a copy available.[9]

1893 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, wringing machine manufacturer (The Acme Machine Co), Wardie Villa, Bothwell.[10]

1894 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, ho: Wardie Villa, Bothwell' of 'Acme Manufacturing Co' and of 'Peter Burt and Co'.[11]

1901 Living at Hollybank, Bothwell: Peter Burt (age 44 born Glasgow), Gas Engine and Machine Maker. With his wife Jeanie Burt (age 44 born Glasgow and their seven children; Joseph Smith Burt (age 19 born Glasgow), Gas Engine Maker Draughtsman; Thomas Wotherspoon Burt (age 17 born Glasgow), Gas Engine Maker Patternmaker; George Peter Burt (age 14 born Glasgow); John Wotherspoon Burt (age 11 born Bothwell); Jeanie Lang Burt (age 8 born Bothwell); Lillias Barbara Davidson Burt (age 4 born Bothwell); and Mary Isabel Wilson Burt (age 2 born Bothwell). One servant.[12]

1901 Listed as 'Burt, Peter (of "Acme" Manufacturing Co Ltd.). house: Hollybank, Bothwell.[13]

1908 Debts. '...PETITION having been presented to the Sheriff of the County of Lanark at the instance of The Union Bank of Scotland Limited, incorporated under the Companies Acts, and having their Registered Office at one hundred and ninety-one Ingram Street, Glasgow, for Sequestration of the Estates of PETER BURT, Hollybank, Bothwell...'[14]

1912 Debts. '... Initial Writ having been presented to the Sheriff of Lanarkshire at Hamilton, at the instance of John Dick Scott of Netherhouse, Lesmahagow, for Sequestration of the Estates of PETER BURT, residing at Hollybank, Bothwell...'[15]

1930 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, J.P., (director of Acme Wringers, Ltd, Bridgton, S.E.); ho., Holybank, Bothwell.'[16]

1934 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, J.P., (director of Acme Wringers, Ltd, Bridgton, S.E.); ho., Holybank, Bothwell.'[17]

1940 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, J.P., (director of Acme Wringers, Ltd, Bridgton, S.E.); ho., Holybank, Bothwell.'[18]

1944 Listed as 'Burt, Peter, J.P., (director of Acme Wringers, Ltd, Bridgton, S.E.); ho., Holybank, Bothwell.'[19]


1944 Obituary [20]

WE regret to learn of the death, on January 24th, of Mr. Peter Burt, at his home in Bothwell, Lanarkshire, in his eighty-eighth year.

Mr. Burt won fame as the inventor, in 1909, of the single sleeve valve engine. His interest and energies in connection with that form of engine were maintained up to a few weeks of his death.

His inventive genius was not, however, confined to single sleeve valve engines, for in 1879 he brought into being the domestic rubber roller wringer, known as the "Acme." Starting off in a small factory with only six employees, he lived to see his enterprise grow to very large proportions.

For many years and up till the time of his death he was chairman of his firm, Acme Wringers, Ltd., David Street, Glasgow, S.E. Despite his industrial activities, he was keenly interested in political and social reform.

He was well known throughout Scotland as a leader of the Henry George Movement for the Taxation of Land Values and was for a period chairman of the Glasgow Liberal Council. He also gave many years of excellent service to Glasgow Corporation, his administration being rewarded by several important convenerships and by election to the magistracy. He was a member of the Institution of Engineers and Shipbuilders in Scotland.


See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. 1861 Census (Transcription)
  2. 1871 Census (Transcription)
  3. 1877/78 Post Office Directory of Glasgow
  4. 1880/81 Post Office Directory of Glasgow
  5. 1880/81 Post Office Directory of Glasgow
  6. 1885/86 Post Office Directory of Glasgow
  7. 1886 Slater's Directory of Glasgow
  8. 1886/87 Register of Voters
  9. 1891 Census
  10. 1893 Slater's Directory of Glasgow
  11. 1894/95 Post Office Directory of Glasgow
  12. 1901 Census
  13. 1901/02 Post Office Directory of Glasgow
  14. The Edinburgh Gazette Publication date:26 June 1908 Issue:12050 Page:692
  15. The Edinburgh Gazette Publication date:13 August 1912 Issue:12485 Page:861
  16. 1930/31 Post Office Directory of Glasgow
  17. 1934/35 Post Office Directory of Glasgow
  18. 1940/41 Post Office Directory of Glasgow
  19. 1944/45 Post Office Directory of Glasgow
  20. The Engineer 1944 Jan-Jun: Index