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Object ID # 1970.048.001ab
Object Name Turbine
Title Barber Turbine from Meaford, Ontario
Lexicon category 5: T&E For Science & Technology
Year Range from 1903
Year Range to 1906
Artist Barber & Sons
Made Barber & Sons
Place of Origin Meaford, Municipality of Meaford, Grey County
Description A cast steel water turbine. It is a Canadian 16 Turbine model. There is a sixteen-inch water turbine rotor (a) and its casing (b). The rotor has an embossed maker's name slightly visible at the right. The bottom of the rotor shows the curvation of the vanes (the blade-like devices mounted on rotors of turbines to receive kinetic energy from the water). The turbine housing has a three-armed "spider" that holds a replaceable wooden part upon which the bearing sits when the rotor is in place. There would be a hardwood pivot bearing at the bottom of the housing. The rotor piece has an impeller end bearing cup (concave, round-shaped item positioned centrally inside the ring of vanes) . The housing has an inlet gate control rack and pinion. It also has gates. These gates are also known as "guide blades". They are pivoted to the housing by a linkwork so that they open and close simultaneously.

Makers mark Cast lettering: "BARBER & SONS MEAFORD ONT"
Provenance This 16 inch water wheel and casing is a "Barber Turbine", made at the Georgian Foundry of Meaford, Grey County. It has "Barber & Sons Meaford Ont." cast on it. The maker's mark suggests that it was produced between 1903 and 1906.

It was used as part of the milling equipment at Slattery's Mill (Lot 30, Concession C, Sydenham Township, Grey County). It was purchased prior to 1906, as that was the year James Slattery purchased the mill.

The Georgian Foundry was established in Meaford, Ontario in 1867. In 1869, Charles Barber patented his turbine, which was an enormous improvement over the previous heavy wooden overshot and undershot water wheels. The Barber turbine was entirely submerged in water and was more durable, lighter, and faster-rotating. Barber's partner retired in 1883. In 1890, Mr. Barber joined a Mr. Bates in a partnership. In 1903 the firm became "C. Barber & Sons". The years between 1901-1915 were the busiest ones for the foundry. The Barber sons died somewhere in the 1928-1929 time period. (Lindsey, Joseph D., "Water & Blood: The Georgian Foundry", ONTARIO HISTORY, Vol. LXXV, No. 3, September, 1983).

Collection Milling Tools & Equipment Collection
Material Metal/Steel
Dimensions Dia-59 cm
Found Sydenham Township (formerly), Municipality of Meaford, Grey County
People Barber, Charles

Slattery, James
Subjects Foundries
Water power
Search Terms Barber & Sons (Georgian Foundry / Barber's Foundry)
Meaford Industries & Products
Sydenham Township
Slattery's Mill
Function A machine for producing continuous power in which a wheel or rotor, typically fitted with vanes, is made to revolve by a fast-moving flow of water, steam, gas, air, or other fluid.