Dowsing, William

The timber merchant’s and builder’s companion, containing new and copious tables of the reduced weight and measurement of deals and battens… also, a variety of other valuable information, useful to all parties concerned or interested in the buying or selling of foreign timber.

London, Simpkin Marshall & Co. (& Hull, James Plaxton) 1858.

Reference: 06745
Price: £85 [convert currency]

Full Description

8vo. (84)pp, fldg table of Bennetts & Co’s Timber Merchant’s Pocket Guide mounted on verso of front free endpaper. Original blind-stamped cloth, rubbed and a little marked, later typed label on spine. Occasional light browning or foxing. Ink ownership inscription (partially erased) of John Swift, Hull , 1859 (?), and contemporary ink and pencil calculations.

Scarce first edition of what its author, the Hull timber merchant William Dowsing, claims to be the first published guide to timber pricing as calculated by timber merchants themselves. From his introduction it seems clear that pricing, taxation and other information relating to the import, export and selling of timber had until that point been closely guarded by a few wholesale timber merchants, but Dowsing produced this little book for the benefit of all those connected with the trade, including builders and cabinet-makers. At least two further editions followed.

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