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A Little Light in the Darkness : The Life and Times of John Buddle 1773-1843

By Kidd, David, Joseph

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Book Id: WPLBN0002828996
Format Type: PDF eBook:
File Size: 0.8 MB
Reproduction Date: 10/31/2013

Title: A Little Light in the Darkness : The Life and Times of John Buddle 1773-1843  
Author: Kidd, David, Joseph
Language: English
Subject: Non Fiction, Technology, Mining History North East England
Collections: Authors Community, History
Publication Date:
Publisher: Self Published
Member Page: David Kidd


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Joseph Kidd, B. D. (2013). A Little Light in the Darkness : The Life and Times of John Buddle 1773-1843. Retrieved from

John Buddle was a local hero in North East England. When he died in 1843 his funeral procession was more than a mile long and thousands of pitmen lined the route to show their respect. He was a self made man who led his men from the front through floods, fires and explosions to get the coal Britain's industry depended upon. This book based on his unpublished diaries tells the story of his life in his own words, the drama, the tragedy, the lives of rich and poor in a way that makes history come alive.

The life of John Buddle, a mining engineer involved in the development of railways, steamships, and the builder of Seaham Harbour told mainly through extracts from his diaries in his own words. The book also describes his stormy relationship with Lord Londonderry, the terrible colliery disasters at Heaton, Jarrow and Wallsend which cost hundreds of lives, and the invention of the safety lamp.

For those on the surface that bright late spring morning, the twenty five pitmen who had escaped, others from the resting shift, and relatives of those still trapped underground the scene at the surface was terrifying. Within twenty minutes the water was sixty feet deep in the engine pit, the pit where the men were, and by the afternoon it was a hundred and twenty feet up the shaft...Buddle started pumping immediately, but the pumps at full capacity made no impression on the water which seemed to be coming from a vast underground reservoir and flowing like a subterranean river in spate. The only hope for the trapped men was to find another way into the workings. There were plenty of possibilities, but everyone knew it was a desperate gamble; old pits were death traps, a maze of half collapsed shafts and tunnels filled with gas, only madmen would want to go down them, but there was no shortage of volunteers and Buddle himself led the way.

Table of Contents
Introduction A Day to Remember A Century of Inventions Newcastle’s Call The Steam Elephant The Battle against Creep The Deluge The Slaughterhouse The Jarrow Gibbet The Secret Diary An Arranged Marriage Seaham Harbour The Lost Main Line Politics and Personality QED Sudden Death End notes Appendix A Glossary of Mining Terms Bibliography Page References


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