Punch,  57 (1869), 127.

Food for Powder and Fire-Damp



News-Commentary, Drollery


Industry, Accidents, Crime, Death

    Begins by pondering the problem of establishing the cause of powder-mill explosions, a tragedy that witnesses rarely survive. Argues that one explanation is suggested by a recent report in The Times, which describes how workmen at one powder-mill were suspended for possessing pipes and lucifer matches. Punch suggests that cautioning such workmen against using pipes is useless given that they are 'idiotic as to the sense of danger', and compares them to miners who 'light their tobacco' with Davy lamps, and who are so 'tired of their lives' as to want to commit suicide.

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