Year: 2019

room in which there are rows of machinery

Textile technology: Joseph-Marie Jacquard and the loom that changed the world

Between 1801 and 1806, French weaver Joseph-Marie Jacquard developed a machine that was then seen as one of the most important technological advancements in history: the Jacquard Loom.

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man smoking pipe and wearing a hat in front of an industrial landscape

The Bor Mine in Serbia: labour and landscape throughout the 20th century

Mining has been taking place in Bor, eastern Serbia, for centuries – intensified and industrialised since the discovery of copper ore in the early 1900s. This blog explores the 20th century industrial heritage of mining in Bor.

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cafe full of people on street

The Chair Men: Gebrüder Thonet and the Number 14 Chair

Vienna’s cafe culture is legendary – coffee, kipferl, and kuchen are important ingredients. And another important part of the recipe are the cafes themselves and their furniture – in particular the Number 14 Thonet chair. The firm of Thonet are synonymous with the furniture for Viennese cafes, as well as homes and establishments around the […]

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neon signs on a building in a snowy city

Neon nights: how advertising signs lit up the city

Neon lighting’s distinctive glow has been brightening cities across Europe and the world all through the 20th century. Neon signs and lighting animate city centres, evoking both a modern, urban world, both futuristic and nostalgic.

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photograph showing the reflection of photographer using a camera in a mirror

‘Self-pride and knowing yourself’: marking Black History Month in Britain

Throughout the history of Britain, renowned people of the African Diaspora have left their mark, shaping the country by making it face up to its role in slavery, colonial impact, perpetual discrimination and the white washing of its history. As October in the United Kingdom marks Black History Month, this blog looks at moments in […]

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women sitting at long tables working with flowers, large piles of flowers are in the foreground

The fragrance factory: Roure-Bertrand Fils and the perfume industry in Grasse

When we spray on perfume, how often do we think about how the fragrance was made? The process to extract fragrances and oils from flowers is a perfect blend of nature, science and industry, as illustrated beautifully by this short book about Roure-Bertrand Fils factory in Grasse, France.

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blurry photograph of a man on a beach

Miloš Crnjanski: a literary life of migration and exile

Author Miloš Crnjanski’s works form an invaluable part of Serbian 20th-century literature. His creative writing – poetry and prose – as well as his life in general, were marked by key elements: migration, exile and existential drama.

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large number of people working at benches in a factory

Fàbrica Gròber: the rise and fall of an industrial landmark in Girona

Fàbrica Gròber, a textile factory specialised in trimmings, buttons and haberdashery, is a landmark of Girona history, even today 40 years after it closed. This blog looks at the rich history of the factory which offered jobs and economic prosperity and modernised culture and society in its region.

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Catchpenny prints in The Netherlands

What did the people in the lower orders of society and children read in the 18th and 19th centuries? In the Netherlands, their main reading material was catchpenny prints.

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girl in a red dress holding a sign saying MAGGI

Maggi: a Swiss seasoning that found a home in various cultures

As a child growing up in Senegal, Maggi cubes and Maggi sauce were a big and important ingredient in many Senegalese dishes, if not all of them. I remember watching countless advertisements on TV promoting Maggi cubes, with a Senegalese lady in her boubou (traditional clothing) preparing a meal.

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porcelain staute of a man writing at a desk

From quills to typewriters: how the industrial revolution changed our writing culture

Documents written centuries ago are fascinating, revealing not only the thoughts of those who wrote them but a history of how they were written. This blog looks at the changes in the way we have expressed our thoughts through the written word since the industrial revolution.

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De Universiteitsbibliotheek aan het Ladeuzeplein in Leuven

Leuven’s University Library: Risen from the ashes

For Libraries Week,  we are putting the spotlight on the history of a remarkable university library. Leuven University’s library has had a past as rich as it has been turbulent, peppered with religious conflicts, political discord, and wartime catastrophe. 

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Radiomottaker

Philips: illuminating the world from Eindhoven

Learn how two Dutch brothers who wanted to make a lightbulb factory started the multinational concern.

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black and white photograph of a large early industrial works

Ironopolis: Bolckow Vaughan and the growth of Middlesbrough

Industrial heritage can be ephemeral – the buildings where we work can disappear and are not always seen as important reminders of the past. This is certainly the case with the ironworks and steelworks of Bolckow & Vaughan, which drove the growth of Middlesbrough.

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The Flying Dutchmen: 100 years of KLM

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines celebrates its 100th anniversary on 7 October. To honour this jubilees, this blog explores the cultural heritage of KLM found on Europeana. Come fly with us to discover stories and pictures from aviation history.

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a man and a woman harvesting potatoes

Farming landscapes in Scandinavia: how industrial agriculture transformed rural life

Agriculture lies at the heart of social developments all over the world. Farming has transformed the lives of farmers, and also people and nature worldwide.

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