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James Martin was a man who seemed to have the happy knack of being able to make a mountain out of a molehill He helped transform Gawler into the town we see today through hard work and sheer perseverance He came to Australia from England in search of prosperity and a new life He was a man who knew his job well and he intended to use his skills and knowledge to create a business of his own James Martin and Co His business started off small but as his inventions plans and ideas were gradually realised he began to prosper and his business became the largest engineering company in the area He had competition in Gawler with the likes of the May Brothers who wanted to beat Mr Martin at his own game But James Martin and Co still prospered above all the rest to become the most powerful company in Gawler James Martin was born in the year 1821 His mother was a widow He had seven siblings and he was born into a difficult life His father was in business as a founder but when he died there was no one else to carry on the firm Martin lived in a village named Foundry named after the foundry kept by his grandfather situated in the Parish of Stithians Cornwall He received little schooling and at an early age he had to try and earn his own livelihood After gaining some experience in his home town he then moved to Truro to work for a millwright and then moved on to the Treseaven Mine where he caught a glimpse of the first ever train like adaptation Martin was asked to create a new model that would help save the miners the exertion of climbing up hundreds of feet on ladders to reach the surface He made a model which can now be seen at the Polytechnic Hall at Fallmouth Martin
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