This database contains documents relating to membership in the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, 1847–1938.
In 1847, fifty-six engineers and manufacturers met in Birmingham to found the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), with railway pioneer George Stephenson as the group’s first president. Its founders wanted ‘to give an impulse to inventions likely to be useful to the world’. IMechE started graduateship examinations in 1913 and elected its first female member in 1924. A 1947 merger with the Institution of Automobile Engineers (IAE) led to an Automobile Division, and in 1969 a similar merger with the Institution of Locomotive Engineers (ILE) established a Railway Division.
This database contains registers of members, proposals for memberships and changes to membership (such as associate member to member), and related records, including the following IMechE collections:
- membership records of IMechE (1847–1930)
- register of members (1847–1930)
- typescript membership proposal forms
- membership records of IAE (1906–1938)
- membership records of ILE (1915–1938)
Indexed records and their associated images found after 1938 have been excluded to conform with privacy restrictions.
Engineering records from the late 19th century document a particularly important era in UK history. Records like these can tie into occupations in the census, railway records, and trade union records, as well as revealing biographical details and work patterns over time.
What You May Find in the Records
Records may include the following details:
- birth date
- event date
- apprenticeship details
- work experience, with dates, places, employers
- names of those who proposed a new member and supported his or her election