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Thomas Sopwith's Models, 1841

Killhope, The North of England Lead Mining Museum, Durham

Learning and Discovery

1800 – 1899

Thomas Sopwith was a mining surveyor in the North Pennine Orefield, at one time, the world’s greatest lead-producing area.

Influenced by William Smith (’the father of English geology’), among others, Sopwith, (whose family had a cabinet making company in Newcastle), produced several series of wooden models, representing geological strata. The models were made from thin sheets of exotic woods.

They were intended as teaching aids to illustrate folding, faulting and landforms; for example, to understand local coal-bearing strata.

Thomas Sopwith was the grandfather of the Thomas Sopwith who founded the Sopwith Aviation Company.

By Thomas Sopwith (1803-1879)

On display at Killhope Museum

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