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In the following pages an endeavour is made to delineate the principal features in the growth of the great coal industry, with special reference to improvements in engineering, by means of which it has become possible for the miners to open out their deep “subterranean cities” and to procure and bring to the surface the vast quantities of coal which are now annually drawn from the mines of this country
Apart from the value of coal as the mainspring of the great industrial pre-eminence of the kingdom, it is hoped that the narrative may not be without interest of another kind, inasmuch as it furnishes account of the origin
of some of the most
useful inventions of modern times—as, for example, railways, the steam-engine, and
steam-engine, and the locomotivewhich were almost called into existence by mining requirements, and were long employed by the mining community before they came to be adopted, in a more improved form, by the public in general.
At time more vigorous efforts being made to promote the safety of the miners in their dangerous occupation than at present. Should the account here given of what has been accomplished in this direction tend to throw any light upon the matter, the circumstance would afford the writer the greatest satisfaction.
9th May, 1882.