Sir Jacob Acworth and Experimental Ship Design during the Period of the Establishments
Acworth’s career quickly progressed, hindered only in its success due to suspension for negligence, after which he was quickly reinstated. Acworth had unprecedented control over ship design as Master Shipwright. His contributions included designing light and simple ‘snug ships’. The ‘new manner’ of shipbuilding based on Newtonian theory was embraced by Acworth with mixed, but generally good, results. Conservatism, a point of criticism in his later years, was common among senior sea officers, and threats from Spain and France were sufficiently responded to. Acworth became increasingly marginalised and moved to the Navy Board, where he remained until his death in 1749.