Basic Biographical Details

Name: Joseph Mitchell
Designation: Architect, Engineer
Born: 3 November 1803
Died: 26 November 1883
Bio Notes: Joseph Mitchell was born in Forres on 3 November 1803 (christened 11 November), the son of John Mitchell, a stonemason who was appointed Thomas Telford's Chief Inspector and Superintendent of Highland Roads and Bridges, and Margaret Philip. He gained practical experience as a mason working on the Fort Augustus Locks of Telford's Caledonian Canal, and was then invited by Telford to become his clerk and study engineering. When his father died in 1824, he succeeded to the post of Chief Inspector at the age of only 21. In 1828 he was appointed engineer to the Scottish Board of Fisheries, under the auspices of which he was responsible for the construction of 16 harbours under their harbour building and improvement scheme across Scotland. He had a particular interest in railway construction, and from the late 1830s was involved in surveying the route of new lines and promoting their execution. He engineered the routes of a number of the lines that later formed the Highland Railway, and his line over the Grampians from Dunkeld to Forres is widely considered to be his greatest achievement.

He worked from Inverness and it was there that he married Christian Dunsmure on 27 January 1841. He was a member of the Institution of Structural Engineers and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.

In 1862 Joseph Mitchell suffered a stroke and in the same year took his assistants, William and Murdoch Paterson, into partnership, the firm being re-named Joseph Mitchell and Company. Mitchell eventually recovered but retired in 1867. The subsequent history of the firm is still unclear but it continued until at least November 1874 when Murdoch Paterson was appointed chief engineer of the Highland Railway.

Joseph Mittchell died on 26 November 1883 in London, leaving estate of 99,524 2s 6d.

Private and Business Addresses

The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect, engineer:
 AddressTypeDate fromDate toNotes
Item 1 of 1Inverness, Inverness-shire, ScotlandBusiness   

Employment and Training


The following individuals or organisations employed or trained this architect, engineer (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 1Joseph Mitchell & Company18621867PartnerMitchell retired 1867

Employees or Pupils

The following individuals were employed or trained by this architect, engineer (click on an item to view details):
 NameDate fromDate toPositionNotes
Item 1 of 4William PatersonBefore 18361862Assistant 
Item 2 of 4Murdoch Paterson18461851Apprentice 
Item 3 of 4William BlackEarly 1860s Assistant 
Item 4 of 4Murdoch Patersonc. 18541862Assistant 

Buildings and Designs

This architect, engineer was involved with the following buildings or structures from the date specified (click on an item to view details):
 Date startedBuilding nameTown, district or villageIslandCity or countyCountryNotes
Item 1 of 48 Coldingham HarbourColdingham BerwickshireScotlandDate uncertain
Item 2 of 481825Torgyle BridgeInvermoriston Inverness-shireScotland 
Item 3 of 481827HarbourFindhorn MorayshireScotlandSouth pier
Item 4 of 481827Parish ChurchRothiemurchus Inverness-shireScotlandWith Thomas Telford
Item 5 of 481828Kilmeny ManseBallygrantIslayArgyllScotlandModified Telford's design
Item 6 of 481828Maryburgh Tollhouse, Conon BridgeConon Bridge Ross and CromartyScotland 
Item 7 of 481828Parliamentary ManseBerneray / Eilean BhearnaraighHarrisInverness-shireScotland 
Item 8 of 481828Stenscholl Parish ManseStaffinSkyeInverness-shireScotland 
Item 9 of 48c. 1828Free Presbyterian ManseKinlochbervie SutherlandScotland 
Item 10 of 48c. 1828Trumisgarry, Parliamentary ManseTrumisgarryNorth UistInverness-shireScotland 
Item 11 of 48c. 1828Waternish Parish ManseHallinSkyeInverness-shireScotland 
Item 12 of 481829Cellardyke HarbourCellardyke FifeScotland 
Item 13 of 481829Dunglass Harbour, pier and breakwaterCove|Dunglass BerwickshireScotland 
Item 14 of 481829Knock, Parliamentary ManseKnockLewisRoss and CromartyScotland 
Item 15 of 481829St Ninian's Church, SkaillDeernessMainlandOrkneyScotland 
Item 16 of 48c. 1830Bridge over the River DulnainDulnain Bridge Inverness-shireScotland 
Item 17 of 481833Keiss HarbourKeiss CaithnessScotland 
Item 18 of 48c. 1835Viewhill GateInverness Inverness-shireScotland 
Item 19 of 481836PierInvereray ArgyllScotlandPier extended
Item 20 of 481837Bridge across the mouth of Loch Fleet  SutherlandScotlandTwo arches added to bridge
Item 21 of 481837The Mound, Bridge and DamLoch Fleet SutherlandScotlandAlterations
Item 22 of 481838Harbour and breakwaterBuckhaven FifeScotland 
Item 23 of 481839Enclosing walls around the Sheriff Court and District Court (Inverness Jail)Inverness Inverness-shireScotland 
Item 24 of 481850HarbourColonsay ArgyllScotland 
Item 25 of 481850Lybster HarbourLybster CaithnessScotlandReconstruction
Item 26 of 481850PierCarasaigMullArgyllScotland 
Item 27 of 481855Inverness Railway StationInverness Inverness-shireScotlandRoofs over platform
Item 28 of 48c. 1855Station HotelInverness Inverness-shireScotlandOriginal building
Item 29 of 481856Findhorn ViaductForres MorayshireScotland 
Item 30 of 481856Railway ViaductNairn NairnshireScotland 
Item 31 of 481858Fochabers High StationFochabers MorayshireScotland 
Item 32 of 481858Railway StationMulben MorayshireScotland 
Item 33 of 481860Orton Junction RailwayRothes MorayshireScotland 
Item 34 of 481861Invergordon Railway Station and ancillary buildingsInvergordon Ross and CromartyScotland 
Item 35 of 481861Railway ViaductAlness Ross and CromartyScotland 
Item 36 of 481861Railway ViaductEdinkillie MorayshireScotland 
Item 37 of 481861Tilt Railway ViaductBlair Atholl PerthshireScotland 
Item 38 of 481862Railway StationForres MorayshireScotland 
Item 39 of 481862Scurrypool Bridge over the Altyre BurnAltyre MorayshireScotland 
Item 40 of 481863Railway Bridge on Castle Grant EstateGrantown-on-Spey MorayshireScotland 
Item 41 of 481863Railway StationTain Ross and CromartyScotland 
Item 42 of 481863Railway StationAlves MorayshireScotland 
Item 43 of 481864Balnagown Railway ViaductBalnagown Ross and CromartyScotland 
Item 44 of 481864Fearn Railway Station and ancillary buildingsFearn Ross and CromartyScotland 
Item 45 of 481864Kildary Railway StationKildary Ross and CromartyScotland 
Item 46 of 48c. 1865Railway StationArdgay Ross and CromartyScotland 
Item 47 of 481867Shin Railway ViaductInvershin SutherlandScotland 
Item 48 of 481868(?)Railway StationLairg SutherlandScotlandJoseph Mitchell retired in 1867


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this architect, engineer:
Item 1 of 4Bell, S P1975A Biographical Index of British Engineers in the 19th Century New York & London: Garland Publishing, Inc. 
Item 2 of 4DNB Dictionary of National Biography   
Item 3 of 4Mitchell, J1883Reminiscences of my life in the Highlands   
Item 4 of 4Pride, Glen L1999The Kingdom of Fife2nd EditionThe Rutland Pressp149

Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this architect, engineer:
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 2Engineering1883v36 pp523-4 - obituary
Item 2 of 2Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers1884LXXVI pp362-8 - obituary