Dave Thorpe with intro by Tony Moon
The Last Flame in American Mines
This high quality publication is a thoroughly outstanding historical documentation of American carbide lamps. The author, a collector himself, conducted extensive research and produced excellent new photos from lamp collections across the US. Information from and about the manufacturers and several of the inventors is included. This book captures the readers interest immediately and is a must-have for lamp collectors around the world.
"Collectors and historians will thoroughly appreciate Dave Thorpe's comprehensive study of American miner's carbide lamps from the early twentieth century. Interwoven with hundreds of color images that document this rare history are the personal life stories of the inventors themselves, bringing to life a little-known chapter in the story of industrial America. Even readers unfamiliar with this unique, somewhat quirky subject will find themselves captivated by the pages of this book."
- Bob Schroth, collector and underground explorer
Following the Civil War the United States entered a new industrial era that placed a greater demand on the mining industry. Coal was needed to fuel factories that consumed ever-increasing amounts of metal ores to fabricate the machines of modern society. Better illumination was needed for miners than the existing candles and oil-wick lamps. With the discovery of acetylene gas in the 1890s, carbide lamps cheaper and brighter slowly gained popularity among miners.
Carbide Light: The Last Flame in American Mines traces the history of the numerous inventors and manufacturers of carbide lamps and offers exhaustive, full-color documentation of this fascinating corner of American history. Author Dave Thorpe describes the technical features of the numerous styles of lamps, from the earliest Baldwin lights that began to appear around 1900 to the extensive line of Justrite lamps that were still made in the 1970s. He also includes biographies of the inventors who patented the lamps, bringing human drama to this engineering topic. During carbide's short reign as the predominant form of mine lighting roughly 1910 to 1925 hundreds of novel designs appeared and form a chrononlogical record in the pages of this volume.
illustration: 700 illustrations and colour photos.
format: 24 x 31 cm
hardcover linen cover with dustjacket