Dr Jim Andrew
After degrees in Mechanical Engineering, Jim Andrew worked in industry and public health before joining Birmingham Museum Service as a Keeper in 1974. He has been studying early steam engines and their inventors for over thirty years and jointly led the excavation of Watt’s Smethwick Engine house in 1984. He was awarded his PhD by the University of Birmingham in 1991 for research on Boulton & Watt’s pumping engines, particularly those used by the canal companies in this country. In addition to his museum job, he also worked with the University of Birmingham as a part time Senior Research Fellow in a team looking at James Watt & Company in the nineteenth Century. He retired as Collections Manager at Thintank, the Birmingham Science Museum, in 2003 but was retained as a part time collections’ adviser, which has continued to this day. He was the Newcomen Society’s Midland Branch Secretary from 1980 until 2015. He sits on advisory panels at the Black Country Living Museum and the Sandfield (Lichfield) pumping engine restoration project. He has written several papers for “West Midlands History” and continues with research and lecturing in engineering history.