Definition of a Steam Locomotive: A Steam Locomotive is
defined as a powered railway vehicle used for pulling trains that produces its pulling power through a steam engine. The
Steam Locomotive was designed to move across rails and fuelled by burning combustible material, such as coal/coke, wood, or oil, to produce steam in a boiler.
Definition of a Steam Engine: A Steam Locomotive is powered by a steam
engine. A steam engine is powered by a coal fire that heats a boiler full of
water to make the steam. Steam is then piped from the boiler into the cylinder
in which a piston moves up and down due to steam pressure. The piston is
connected to a drive wheel that drives the locomotive forward and wasted steam
billows out of the locomotive's chimney.
Who invented the Steam Locomotive?
Prior to the invention of the Steam Locomotive, a vehicle propelled by steam,
the Steam Engine was invented in 1769 by James
Watt (1736 - 1819). The facts in this article provide the history and
biography of Richard Trevithick followed by the bio of George Stephenson.
Fact File about Richard Trevithick: Invention: Steam Locomotive *** Date of Invention: 1803 *** Name of Inventor:
Richard Trevithick *** Lifespan of Richard Trevithick: 1771 – 1833 *** Nationality: English *** Historical Period: Industrial Revolution (1700 - 1860) *** Category: Transportation *** Country of Origin:
Cornwall, England *** Facts about the Inventor, Richard Trevithick, and the invention of the Steam Locomotive ***
Fact 1: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Richard Trevithick was born on
April 13, 1771, Illogan, Cornwall, England and died on April 22, 1833 in
Fact 2: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? The early years of Richard
Trevithick were spent in the mining community of Camborne, Illogan in Cornwall where he was raised by his family.
His father was a miner called Richard Trevithick and his mother's name was Ann
Teague who was the daughter of a mining engineer. Richard Trevithick was their
only son but he had five older sisters.
Fact 3: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Richard Trevithick was
educated at a small, local school in Camborne where he was good at math but
preferred playing sports. His passion for engines was fuelled by his next door
neighbour, William Murdoch who had invented an oscillating cylinder steam
Fact 4: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Following his education
Richard Trevithick's first job was at the East Stray Park Mine. He did well at
the mine and earned enough to get married and start a family. He married a girl
called Jane Harvey in 1797 and the couple went on to have six children.
Fact 5: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? His wife's father, John
Harvey, owned an engineering works that made beam engines, run by steam, for
pumping water from mines. The engineering works provided Richard Trevithick a
good understanding of steam engines and in 1797 he acquired a position as an
engineer in the Ding Dong Mines in Penwith, Cornwall.
Fact 6: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Whilst working at the Ding
Dong Mines Richard Trevithick became friendly with an other engineer called
Edward Bull and together they developed the use of high pressure steam.
Fact 7: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Richard Trevithick earned an
excellent reputation as an engineer and became interested in building a road
locomotive powered by steam.
Fact 8: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? In 1801 Richard Trevithick
built a steam road locomotive he called the 'Puffing Devil' and gave the first
demonstration of steam-powered by driving his road locomotive through the
streets of Camborne in Cornwall.
Fact 9: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? The following year he built
another steam-powered road vehicle that he called the London Steam Carriage
which he demonstrated in the streets of London to Paddington and back via
Fact 10: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? In 1803 Richard Trevithick
harnessed high-pressure steam and constructed the world's first railway steam
Fact 11: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Richard Trevithick used the
Penydarren Tramroad for the trial of his steam locomotive. Richard Trevithick's
locomotive successfully hauled wagons, but it was so heavy that it broke many
iron rails. Richard Trevithick's steam engine was then used as a 'Stationary
steam engine' used for driving a forge hammer at the Penydarren works.
Fact 12: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Despite the failure of
Richard Trevithick at the Penydarren works he was employed by Christopher
Blackett, owner of the Wylam Colliery in Northumberland to build a steam
locomotive to replace the horse drawn transport of coal wagons and the wooden
wagonway with an iron track.
Fact 13: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Richard Trevithick returned
to Cornwall and built the locomotive known as the 'Catch Me Who Can'. In 1808
Richard Trevithick took his new steam locomotive to London. He built a a
circular railway in Euston Square, London and charged passengers to ride on his
railway - it was the first fare paying railway in the world.
Fact 14: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Richard Trevithick's
endeavour at Euston Square with his 'Catch Me Who Can' failed. Once again his
steam locomotive also proved too heavy for the rails and the experiment was
abandoned. It would be several years before steam locomotion became commercially
Fact 15: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Richard Trevithick was broke
and failed to attract any sponsors due to his apparent lack of success. He had
no other alternative but to watch as other engineers and inventors began to
build improved steam-driven locomotives.
Fact 16: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? In 1816 Richard Trevithick
ended up working as an engineer in the silver mines of Peru where he developed
more steam locomotives. Here he was successful and the profits made from a
successful series of steam engines enabled him to purchase his own silver mines.
Fact 17: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? His success was short lived.
War erupted in Peru and Richard Trevithick was forced to flee the country
without a penny. Richard Trevithick made his way to Columbia where he met Robert
Stephenson, the son of George Stephenson, who gave him the fare to return to
Fact 18: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? The penniless Richard
Trevithick arrived back in England in 1827 in time to witness the success of
George Stephenson's locomotive called the 'Rocket'.
Fact 19: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Richard Trevithick's
achievements and abilities were scarcely acknowledged and he gained practically
no financial rewards for his efforts. He was denied a pension by the government.
Fact 20: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Richard Trevithick died in
extreme poverty on April 22, 1833 at The Bull Inn at Dartford, London.
Fact File about George Stephenson: Invention: Steam Locomotive *** Date of Invention: 1814 *** Name of Inventor: George Stephenson *** Lifespan of Inventor: 1781 - 1848 *** Nationality of Inventor: English *** Historical Period: Industrial Revolution (1700 - 1860) *** Category: Transportation *** Country of Origin: England *** Facts about the Inventor, George Stephenson, and the invention of the Locomotive ***
Fact 21: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? George Stephenson, was born
on June 9, 1781 in Wylam, Newcastle, UK and died on August 12, 1848. George
Stephenson was married twice. His first wife was Frances Henderson from
1802–1806 who died of tuberculosis in 1806. The couple had and his only child,
Robert Stephenson. His second wife was Elizabeth Hindmarsh from 1820–1845.
Fact 22: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? The early years of George
Stephenson were spent in Wylam, Newcastle, UK where he was raised by his family
who were all illiterate. His father's name was Robert Stephenson, a fireman for
the local colliery pumping engine and his mother was called Mabel Stephenson.
George Stephenson received a poor education and his first job was as a an
engineman at Water Row Pit coal mine in Newburn, to the west of Newcastle.
Fact 23: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Realizing his lack of
education would hold him back he enrolled at night school and became interested
in the new inventions of the Industrial Revolution and in engineering.
Fact 24: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? George Stephenson acquired
various jobs in different coal pits around the area of Newcastle and gained a
reputation as an excellent engineer expert in steam-driven engineering.
Fact 25: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? In 1814 George Stephenson constructed a
steam locomotive he called the Blutcher that replaced the horse and could pull
30 tons of freight up a hill at 4 mph. He built his Blutcher steam locomotive to
run on a track laid with cast iron rails, which were essential because the
powerful steam engine was too heavy for roads or wooden tracks. The cast iron
rails reduced friction and increased the efficiency of the steam locomotive.
Fact 26: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? In 1820, George Stephenson
built a railway from Hetton colliery to Sunderland that replaced the existing
horses with a steam locomotive.
Fact 27: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? In 1825, George Stephenson
became the leading engineer in the project to construct the 25 mile Stockton to
Darlington railway. George Stephenson's Locomotive, called the 'Locomotion',
reached a speed of 24mph and could carry 8 tons of coal. The 'Locomotion' was
the first steam locomotive to have a passenger car.
Fact 28: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? In 1829 George Stephenson,
together with his son Robert, designed and built an advanced locomotive that he
called "The Rocket" specifically for a competition called the 'Rainhill Trials'.
Fact 29: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? The Rainhill Trials
competition was run by the directors of the nearly completed Liverpool and
Manchester Railway to to determine the best locomotive engine for the new
section of their railway line.
Fact 30: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? Five locomotive engines
entered the Rainhill Trials contest: the Cycloped, Novelty, Perseverance, Sans
Pareil and the Rocket. The Rainhill Trials competition proved the practicability
of using steam locomotives on railways - the railroad was here to stay.
Fact 31: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? George Stephenson died of
pleurisy on August 12, 1848 and was buried at the Holy Trinity church, Newbold
Road, Chesterfield, Derbyshire.
Fact 32: Who invented the Steam Locomotive? The success of the Stockton
to Darlington railway and George Stephenson's 'Rocket' locomotive, which reached
the speed of 30mph, stimulated the laying of iron railroad lines and the
construction of locomotives across the world. It also earned George Stephenson
the title of the "Father of the Railways".