Memoir of the Life of Sir Marc Isambard Brunel

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Abandoning a military career, Richard Beamish (1798-1873) decided to become a civil engineer. His suitability as a biographer of Sir Marc Isambard Brunel (1769-1849) stems from the period he spent working closely with the Brunels on the Thames Tunnel. Published in 1862, this memoir recounts the elder Brunel's eventful life and work, including his youth in France, his flight to America in the aftermath of the French Revolution, his lesser-known ventures in the early nineteenth century, and the tunnelling project which would consume much of the second half of his life. An informed portrait of a figure who has since been outshone by his more famous son, this book includes first-hand accounts of the ill-fated early attempt to build the Thames Tunnel, which was abandoned in 1828 due to flooding and lack of funds, and of Brunel's vindication upon its eventual completion in 1843.