The hard life of the "Bal Maidens" in Cornish ore mines

"I crush pieces of ore with a hammer. I've been doing it for three years. It's very arduous. Sometimes I feel pain in my limbs and sometimes in my back. I give my mother all the wages." Elizabeth Hocking was pretty spare with her words. She was a "Bal Maid".
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Bal Maidens Home Page


Mad Max, Big Wheel, Gemini, Medusa and Mosquito - we form Ferropolis

During one of the trips to the cavernous remains of the opencast mine in Golpa-Nord we were surprised by an unusually fast Trabi speeding towards us. Two men got out. One of them wore a broad rimmed cowboy hat and carried a revolver. I went up to the two ...
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Gräfenhainichen. Ferropolis


Ironbridge Gorge, a cradle of the Industrial Revolution

"Look!" Michael Darby stretches out his arm and points upward. "Can you see the notches in the metal?", he asks. "Those are the marks of the ropes that were used to hold the iron girders fast." His audience looks astonished: "And what about rivets? ..."
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Telford. Iron Bridge WHS


A textile mill used as an experimental ground for a new social order

The English poet William Wordsworth called Corra Linn, a waterfall near the town of Lanark in South Scotland, "the Clyde's most majestic daughter".  Corra Linn is the largest of four waterfalls that cascade down through the narrow gorges to the valley at the bottom.
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Lanark. New Lanark WHS


Bone-breaking work to deliver a table service to the Russian czarina

Making china is bone-breaking work. Especially here in Stoke-on-Trent, the home of bone china. It’s made of china clay, feldspar and quarz, mixed with a fair portion of calcined ox bone ash. And the result is an extremely thin porcelain china of the highest quality.
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Stoke-on-Trent. The Potteries


Tsar and carpenter, an early case of industrial espionage

"The musicians over here! Haven't you cleared away the tables yet? Get down to work, boys! Look sharp, the dance is about to start." A wedding festival in full swing. A relaxed atmosphere amidst bouquets of flowers and colourful lamps. Suddenly an officer strides ...
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Zaandam. Zaanse Schans