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2020-09-17 10:22:16
Société anonyme des mines et fonderies de zinc de la Vieille Montagne[.] Album de 30 vues.Paris, (printed by Auguste Bry), 1850-1851. Oblong 1mo (55.5 x 38.5 cm). Tinted lithographed title-page and 30 tinted lithographed plates (55.5 x 38.5 cm, one slightly smaller: 35 x 50.5 cm), all in fine contemporary hand-colouring. Loose in modern clamshell box.
Extremely rare first edition of an impressive series of lithographed views showing the zinc mines, foundries and factories in Belgium and Germany owned by the "Société Anonyme de Mines et Fonderies de Zinc de la Vieille Montagne". The series includes views of Moresnet, Welkenraedt, Rabotraedt, Angleur, Saint Léonard (Liège), Valentin-Cocq and Bray, all beautifully rendered by the French landscape painter Adolphe Maugendre (1809-1895).The series shows the complete process of producing zinc, from the zinc ore extraction to the stoking, pouring and refilling of the crucible, and finally the production of sheets of zinc in a rolling mill. It includes four detailed views of the Saint-Léonard plant (one, surprisingly, featuring a woman and two children). In the 20th century the Vieille Montagne society, together with a number of other mining and smelting companies, evolved into "Umicore", a global materials technology and recycling group still active today.Some light marginal spotting, the title-page more severely, title-page with a tiny tear, otherwise in very good condition. An important visual record of the history of the zinc industry.l WorldCat (only a catalogue entry, not listing any copies); no further copies in KVK; for Dony: Biographical Dictionary of the History of Technology, pp. 376-377; for Maugendre: Benezit VII, p. 273.
Bookseller: ASHER Rare Books (Since 1830) [Netherlands]
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