Biographies of Working Men

Biographies of Working Men

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Biographies of Working Men by Grant Allen

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111

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Biographies of Working Men

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I. Thomas Telford, StonemasonII. George Stephenson, Engine-ManIII. John Gibson, SculptorIV. William Herschel, BandsmanV. Jean Francois Millet, PainterVI. James Garfield, Canal BoyVII. Thomas Edward, Shoemaker

Book Excerpt

n at this humble post as a stone-cutter; but already he began to aspire to something better. He earned first-class mason's wages now, and saved whatever he did not need for daily expenses. In this respect, the improvidence of his English fellow-workmen struck the cautious young Scotchman very greatly. They lived, he said, from week to week entirely; any time beyond a week seemed unfortunately to lie altogether outside the range of their limited comprehension.

At the end of two years in London, Telford's skill and study began to bear good fruit. His next engagement was one which raised him for the first time in his life above the rank of a mere journeyman mason. The honest workman had attracted the attention of competent judges. He obtained employment as foreman of works of some important buildings in Portsmouth Dockyard. A proud man indeed was Thomas Telford at this change of fortune, and very proudly he wrote to his old friends in Eskdale, with almost boyish delight, about the trust reposed in him by

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