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        The catastrophe of the Beaujonc coal mine near Li�ge, 1812

        French School, (19th century); French. Medium: colour lithograph. Date: 1812. On 18 February, 1812, 127 coal miners were trapped in the mine by a flood of water. 35 miners were able to escape but 70 were trapped. With the heroic assistance of one of the chief miners, Hubert Goffin (1771-1821) (illustrated in a portrait here) the lives of the 70 miners were saved and able to escape 4 days later on 4 March. This illustration shows the liberated miners being welcomed with joy by their families. At the time of the accident Beaujonc (now in Belgium) was under the rule of France and Goffin was rewarded as a hero by Emperor Napoleon I with the honour of the L�gion d'Honneur and an annual pension of 600 francs. It is also of note that this illustration of an accident during the early days of 19th century industrialisation shows the use of a steam engine to assist drainage. Provenance: Musee de la Ville de Paris, Musee Carnavalet, Paris, France. Photographic Rights The Bridgeman Art Library.


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