Henry Melville Napier

Henry Melvill Napier (2 May 1854 – 18 December 1940) was a Scottish rugby union international who represented Scotland in the 1876–77 Home Nations rugby union matches, 1877–78 Home Nations rugby union matches, 1878–79 Home Nations rugby union matches and 1879–80 Home Nations rugby union matches.[1] Napier was also a noted engineer and shipbuilder.

Henry Melvill Napier
Birth nameHenry Melvill Napier
Date of birth(1854-05-02)2 May 1854
Place of birthGlasgow, Scotland
Date of death(1940-12-18)18 December 1940
Place of deathBowling, West Dunbartonshire, Scotland
Notable relative(s)Ian Napier, son
Rugby union career
Position(s) Forward
Amateur team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
- Glasgow University RFC
West of Scotland
Provincial / State sides
Years Team Apps (Points)
- Glasgow District
West of Scotland District
National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
1877-79 Scotland 5 (0)

Rugby Union careerEdit

Amateur careerEdit

Napier played as a forward for Glasgow University RFC and West of Scotland.

Provincial careerEdit

He represented Glasgow District against Edinburgh District in the 5 December 1874 match.[2]

He also represented the West of Scotland District.[3]

International careerEdit

Although he gained Glasgow district cap while with the university, he gained his Scotland caps while with West of Scotland.


Napier was an engineer and shipbuilder.

As a founder of Napier and Miller, a shipbuilding firm based first at Yoker, Glasgow - though then part of West Dunbartonshire - in 1898; then moving to Old Kilpatrick, West Dunbartonshire in 1906.

The company built over 120 ships including warships for the British Navy and passenger ships for the USA and Canada. It also assembled RAF BE2 biplanes. The company went bust in 1931 during the Great Depression.[citation needed]


Henry Napier's son Ian Napier was a Scottish World War 1 flying ace.[citation needed]


  1. ^ "ESPN". ESPN.com. Retrieved 17 March 2016.
  2. ^ "The Glasgow Herald - Google News Archive Search".
  3. ^ https://www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk/viewer/bl/0000060/18760228/032/0006