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James Smith (1888-1957)

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James Smith (c1888-1957), Engineering Lecturer at the Royal Technical College, Glasgow

1959 Obituary [1]

James Smith, who died in 1957 at the age of 69, was a man of whom it can truly be said that there are many engineers today who owe a great deal to his help and encouragement in the early days of their studies.

Mr. Smith had a long connection with education in Scotland. From 1920 to 1927 he was an Engineering Lecturer at the Royal Technical College, Glasgow, from 1927 to 1939 Lecturer in Industrial Administration and for many years Organizer of Technical Education in the West of Scotland, where he was very well known and well liked.

He received his education at Bishopbriggs Public School, Albert Public School, Glasgow, Petershill Public School, and the Royal Technical College, Glasgow, where he graduated B.Sc.

In 1902-13 he first served an apprenticeship and later became a draughtsman with the North British Locomotive Co., Ltd., Glasgow. He then served for a time as a draughtsman with G. and J. Weir, Ltd., Glasgow.

In 1915 he returned to the North British Locomotive Co. and until 1917 took charge of the building of deck-firing torpedo discharge tubes. He subsequently worked for Sir William Beardmore and Co., Ltd., Glasgow, in their howitzer gun and shell factory.

In 1920 began his association with technical education in Scotland. He will long be well remembered for his gentleness, his many kind actions and the worth-while services he gave to his students and to other members of his profession, more particularly for the human touch which accompanied all his actions.

He was elected an Associate Member of the Institution in 1917, and transferred to Member in 1936. He served as Hon. Secretary of the Scottish Branch of the Institution (in the days when it was called the Glasgow and West of Scotland Branch) from the time of its formation in 1923 until 1932. In his capacity as Organizer of the West of Scotland Committee on Technical Education he rendered considerable service to the Joint Committee for National Certificates and Diplomas in Mechanical Engineering in Scotland.

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