TELFORD, Thomas, letters, autographs, documents, manuscripts

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TELFORD, Thomas (1757-1834). Engineer.
Collection of correspondence relating to Telford and road building between 1825 and 1828, 40 letters and 13 copy letters. A comprehensive collection of documents and letters concerning the legalities of a road improvement from Ashbourne to Leek, as part of the London to Carlisle road system.

The letters are to and from a solicitor, John Cruso, who had been appointed to manage the legalities to buy the land necessary for the new road to run through.
The correspondence includes nine letters between John Cruso and his son, also John, who was a barrister at Temple, London, and gives some indication of some of the frustrations in progressing Telford's project.
'... Frank must therefore set off immediately and get the consents ... of the Landowners ... according to Telfords plan and book of reference as that must be lodged with the plan & if he cannot do all Rider or someone must help him as till we get it we can not put in the petition ...'
[19 February 1826]
'... Telford's men had instructions not to go to any of the Landowners. Mr Hart is clearly wanting for tho' it may cut thro' some of his best Land it makes him a road to his property to which he has not now. ...'
[27 February, 1826]
'... I have to pay Mr Telford £60 for the plans etc, the expense of lodging the plans with the clerks of the peace cost more than £10 so that with my expenses I shall be more than £100 out of pocket if I am not paid by the Ashbourne funds...'
[copy letter, 4 April 1826]
Telford was given the nickname 'Colossus of Roads' by his friend, the poet Robert Southey. Among his main achievements in road making were the London to Holyhead and Bangor to Chester roads as engineer to the Holyhead road commissioners from 1815, and the Glasgow to Carlisle, Lanarkshire and highlands of Scotland roads as engineer to the highland roads commissioners from 1803. At about the time of this correspondence, Telford also advised on the 100 mile Warsaw to Brzesc major road towards Moscow, which was completed in 1825.

£425 [No: 26537]
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