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The carpenter and joiner's assistant. Being a comprehensive treatise on the selection, preparation, and strength of materials, and the mechanical principles of framing, with their application in carpentry, joinery, and hand-railing; also a course of instruction in practical geometry, geometrical lines, drawing, projection, and perspective; and an illustrated glossary of terms used in architecture and building.
Glasgow, Blackie, 1862. 2nd edn.

Title page of 'The Carpenter and Joiner's Assistant', showing the Ballochmyle Viaduct under construction
Title page

A compendium of information on building in timber using built examples, mostly from Britain but a few from Europe and America, as illustrations. It includes John White's laminated timber bridge designs; John Baird's roof of the Wellington Street church, Glasgow; Archibald Simpson's roof of Elgin parish church; Jesse Hartley's iron and timber roof for a shed at Salthouse Dock, Liverpool; and, of particular interest, John Miller's system of moving centring for the great Ballochmyle viaduct on the Glasgow & Ayr Railway for which this book is one of the few sources.

The author had a widely-based career, building a reputation for architecture as well as working as a railway engineer, before being appointed the country’s first Borough Engineer in Liverpool where he built nearly 300 miles of sewer.

His much-studied book on timber first appeared in 1860 and went into many more editions. Of the two owners, W.H. Astman of Cheltenham seems to have been an artist and possibly an architect. Thomas Overbury (1878-1957) was an architect, also of Cheltenham, working in partnership as Healing & Overbury.


4to. xiii + (i) + 291 + (1)pp, engraved title and 115 engraved plates numbered I-CXI,XXXV*,LXV*,LXXXIII*,LXXXVII* irregularly bound. Contemporary quarter morocco, spine rejointed and original spine laid down (very worn). Ownership inscriptions of W.H. Astman, June 1878, and Thomas Overbury, Oct. 1937.



Catalogue No: 6456