History of the Iron, Steel, Tinplate and Other Trades of Wales
Charles Wilkins (1831-1913) was a Welsh postmaster and librarian who had a deep interest in local and regional history, especially of the town of Merthyr Tydfil where he lived. He wrote prolifically for many of the local newspapers, and produced histories of the town, Welsh literature, and the region's coal trade before tackling this work, published in 1903, which examines the rise of the iron and steel industries across the region, and gives a lively account of the notable families who were behind this industrial expansion from the eighteenth century onwards. Wales was a hub of steel, iron and tin production, which became much in demand during the Industrial Revolution. Wilkins also considers the workers' lives, devoting space to the riots of 1831, and paints a broad social and economic portrait of Wales at a time of great transition.
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