These details are taken from Saunders' unpublished autobiography
Phillip K. Saunders (b c1899) saw service at the beginning of World War One as a naval cadet and later engineer. After the war he was sent by his family to Brazil, where he worked and travelled widely. In c1932 he moved to Cape Town, South Africa, where he worked initially as an engineering draftsman for a company manufacturing explosives for the Johannesburg and Kimberley mines. Again, he travelled widely as well as working in the mines at Witwatersrand and inventing a pick-cock for reducing air flow. He founded a company to market his invention, returned to London and set up as a consulting engineer. He later travelled across Canada and attempted to make a success of his invention through contacts in Chicago. He eventually built up a world-wide business, though this suffered financially in the 1940s. By 1943 he was stationed in New York working for the Navy, installing anti-submarine devices on merchant vessels, eventually patenting and manufacturing his own design.
Unpublished autobiography, c1945-1960s.
The papers were purchased by the South African Friends of the Bodleian on 25th August 1998.Access Conditions
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The library holds a card index of all manuscript collections in its reading room.
Saunders | Phillip K. | inventor engineer mine worker
Brazil | Description and travel
South Africa | Description and travel
Canada | Description and travel
World War, 1914-1918 | Personal narratives, British
Great Britain.Royal Navy | History | World War, 1914-1918
Goldmines and mining | South Africa | History