1748, Jan 11831, Jul 1
a Scottish nobleman and inventor. The son of Thomas Cochrane, 8th Earl of Dundonald, he joined the British Army as a youth and also served time in the Royal Navy before returning to Culross in 1778 after inheriting the Earldom of Dundonald from his father. He inherited a title and family lands but little money. Left with no other means of support, Archibald turned to invention. Cochrane's most noted invention was a method for making coal tar (patented in 1781) on an industrial scale. The British Tar Company invested in a works; it was managed by John Loudon McAdam. The coke byproduct was used, in part, by an ironworks at Muirkirk, and the flammability of the coal gas byproduct was recognised but not capitalized on. McAdam bought the company, but the deal was troubled.
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