William Watts and lead shot

In 1782 William Watts patented a process for making lead shot, small pellets used for shotgun ammunition. He poured molten lead through a sieve to form balls and allowed them to fall from a height into water; the bigger the size, the longer the fall needed. He built a tower on top of a house in Redcliffe, Bristol, cutting away all the internal floors below it to create a longer drop. His process earned him a fortune of over £10,000, the equivalent of becoming a millionaire today.

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