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July 10, 1793|
Portsmouth, Rhode Island
|Died||May 10, 1858
|Occupation||Businessman, machinist, inventor|
|Known for||Pioneered locomotive industry in Cincinnati, Ohio|
Anthony Harkness (July 10, 1793 – May 10, 1858) was an American businessman, machinist, and inventor associated with pioneering the railroad locomotive industry of Cincinnati, Ohio.
Harkness became a machinist in Paterson, New Jersey in his early twenties. He was an industrial person with an excellent reputation. Harkness went to Cincinnati in 1820 when he was 27 years old and with James Goodloe established a machine-shop and copper foundry on the northeast corner of Broadway and Pearl Streets. He manufactured steam-engines for all kinds of uses, mostly steamboats. Harkness retired from that partnership in 1828 and accumulated a large fortune of $4,000. He borrowed another $2,000 and with this $6,000 total in the summer of 1828 built a new shop on the north side of Front Street, just east of Lawrence Street. He built steam pumps for the Cincinnati Water Works in 1828 and into the 1830s.
The two-story machine shop on Front Street with a smoke stack was the nucleus for the three-story Harkness factory. All these buildings ultimately occupied an entire city block from Lawrence Street. Harkness was a mechanic and engineer and from his factory manufactured equipment and engines for sugar mills.
He branched out and developed other enterprises from the profits he made at his factory. One such venture was the Hamilton Foundry that made machinery for river steamboats. Another of Harkness's new enterprises was the Franklin Cotton Mills with Jacob Strader and Samuel Fosdick as partners. Harkness formed a partnership with Alexander Bonner Latta in 1838 and went into railroad locomotive manufacturing. He built locomotives for the Little Miami Railroad company and other railroad companies with a total of over 30 locomotives built within a ten-year period. He is considered the founder of the Cincinnati locomotive industry.
But it was Anthony Harkness who must be called the founder of the Cincinnati locomotive industry.
The founder of the Cincinnati locomotive industry, Anthony Harkness was born in Portsmouth, Rhode Island on July 10, 1793.