The Dictionary of Australasian Biography/Blackett, John

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Blackett, John, M.Inst.C.E., was educated at Newcastle-on-Tyne, and was a pupil with Messrs. R. & W. Hawthorn, engineers, 1834-41; draughtsman and office engineer to the Great Western Steamship Company, 1841-4; head engineer in iron shipbuilding and railway work with T. R. Guppy, A.I.C.E., 1844-6; engineer to the Governor and Company of Copper Mines in England at Cwm Avon, South Wales, 1846-8. From 1848 to 1851 he practised privately as an engineer in England. In 1859 Mr. Blackett was appointed provincial engineer at Nelson, N.Z., and in 1870 was advanced to the position of Acting Engineer-in-chief for New Zealand, becoming also Marine Engineer in the following year. In 1878 he was made Engineer-in-charge of the North Island, and in 1884 Engineer-in-chief of the colony. Mr. Blackett is now Consulting Engineer of the Government of New Zealand in London.