Coal mining at La Machine became significant in the 17th century and the town took its name from a machine for operating the mines. The last pit closed in 1974. The impressive mining museum opened in 1983 is in two parts – a museum in the former offices of the mining company and the preserved Glénons mine shaft about 400m away in Rue Paul et Auguste Couture. The extensive displays include images, models, life-size reconstructions, written accounts and artefacts. The director’s office and the mine’s archive of plans are on show. A spectacular collection of minerals and fossils is in original cabinets. At the pit can be seen the tall steel headframe, a winding engine, a shaft where the lift is demonstrated and a lamp-room. Visitors follow a route around reconstructed underground workings to see haulage systems, roof supports, a coal cutting machine and a fall in the roof. Nearby are buildings of the mining community and overgrown spoil tips.