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ANDERSON, James of Hermiston (1739-1808)

James Anderson of Hermiston, FRSE, FSA(Scot) (1739-1808), a Scottish agriculturist, journalist and economist invented the Scotch or Scots plough. Some historians believe he was the root source of Marx’s critique of capitalist agriculture. The plough was taken to North America by Scottish farmers and is credited with opening up much virgin territory. See also Canals.

MEIKLE, Andrew (1719-1811) Inventor of the Threshing Machine

An early mechanical engineer, invented and built the first threshing machine in 1789.

OLIVER, James (1823-1908)

An inventor b. Liddesdale, Scotland, who emigrated to the United States where he invented a number of improved ploughs including the Indiana Plough. Eventually his company was manufacturing in excess of 300,000 units a year and was the largest plough-maker in America.

Sir Hew Dalrymple, Lord Drummore (1700-1753)

Inventor of Hollow pipe drainage.  This innovation allowed the drying of water-logged land, bringing large areas into agricultural production.

SMALL, James (1730-1793)

Inventor, b. Berwickshire, Scotland. In 1763, using scientific methods, he invented an advanced plough by introducing a series of curves on the mould board. It could efficiently cut into the soil, and simultaneously turn over the turf creating the type of furrow we would recognise today. Small did not patent his design, believing that he should not profit from an invention intended to make life easier for farmers. Others were not so charitable, and patents were eventually filed elsewhere, particularly in North America. It was the true precursor of the modern plough in all its varieties.

SMITH, James (1789-1850)

James Smith (1789-1850) was a Scottish inventor who produced a sub-soil plough. It worked below normal plough depth, and was used to drain waterlogged ground. He also invented a reaping machine which won him a medal from the Imperial Agricultural Society of St Petersburg. See also Textiles.

The Fresno Scraper

James Porteous (1848-1922) was a Scottish inventor who served his time in his father’s business, making and repairing carriages, wagons and agricultural equipment,  before emigrated to America in 1873. There he started up on his own account making buggies and heavy wagons.  Later he was to invent the Fresno Scraper, the basic design of which forms the basis of most modern earth moving equipment. It was one of the most important agricultural and civil engineering machines ever made, and was designated as an International Historic Engineering Landmark by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. See also Civil Engineering.

The Tuley Tree Shelter

Invented by Graham Tuley of Inverness-shire. A tube used to shelter immature trees during their first years of growth.

Scottish Achievement, Influence & Heritage is a work in progress