David Evans is still actively researching the history of Engine Lane in Brownhills following the emergence of the auction notice found by Peter ‘Pedro’ Cutler last week. David has been chasing the Parkes and Otway connection with historical societies and museums. This, in itself, has returned a suggestion of an intriguing story.
David emailed the Museum of Technology.
To: David Evans
Sent: 13/03/2012 09:54:55 GMT Standard Time
Subj: Parkes & Otway
Dear David Evans
I am afraid I have nothing on our books about Parkes and Otway engines. I have asked one of our members who lives near Brownhills if he knows anything and I’ve pasted below.
Parkes & Otway a bit obscure even up here, let alone in Cambridge.
There are stories about a pump in Engine Lane as early as the 1770s, probably a Newcomen but this was not the Parkes & Otway. An advert in the Staffordshire Advertiser of 28 March 1835 gives some information (attachment 1) although I am always a bit doubtful about the words ‘newly erected’ in 19th century adverts. The firm appear in Pigot’s Directory of 1828/29 (attachment 2) and there is a bit of information about them in an article in the New Zealand Analyst & Leader of 24 November 1861, which was actually copied from the Wolverhampton Chronicle, presumably of a somewhat earlier date (attachment 3).
Perhaps Mr Evans would like to look at the following websites, and contact them for further information. The local history society might help, but the address I have for them is a little dated
Brownhills & Walsall Wood Local History Society
Contact: Mr William Mayo
Brownhills, West Midlands
So the plot thickens. Odd to find your own site recommended as a source of information – an allegory for infinity there, I think.