Wednesday, 25 September 2019

The Industrial Revolution Starts in the Forest


The source of the Sauvaget, known as la Fontaine Bourbon, 
full of crystal clear water even in the drought.
Photographed by Susan Walter. Tour the Loire Valley with a classic car and a private guide.

The little stream called the Sauvaget starts as a spring, deep in the Forest of Preuilly. It descends rapidly from there, just a few kilometres, to meet the River Claise on the outskirts of Bossay sur Claise. Along the way, this insignificant seeming stream powered the hammers and bellows of an iron smelting complex called the Fourneau de Claise in the 17th century.

The humps and hollows in the topography of the forest tell you man was here.
Photographed by Susan Walter. Tour the Loire Valley with a classic car and a private guide.

Iron ore was extracted from under the ground in the forest. Trees were cut to provide charcoal to feed the Claise furnaces. Mule trains, loaded with ore or sacks of charcoal shuttled materials down to the ore refiners. Slag, the waste product from the foundries, was dumped in the forest on the return journey.

All this section of the forest is full of old mounds and hollows.
Photographed by Susan Walter. Tour the Loire Valley with a classic car and a private guide.

A few more snippets about the industrial activity centred on the Sauvaget are to be found in these previous blog posts:

The Claise and its Mills -- 17th century to the present.

A Walk Along the Sauvaget (Part I).

A Walk Along the Sauvaget (Part II).

A Walk Around Sauvaget.


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6 comments:

chm said...

The first photo of this interesting post made me think of a poem, La Source, by the French poet and writer Théophile Gautier (1811-1872).

chm said...

Click on La Source to see the poem, since the new set up doesn't highlight the html. Personaly, I liked the previous setting much better. Chacun son goût! I miss the écolo green!

chm said...

Sorry, my link was bad. Here it is again, let's hope it will work this time!The first photo of this interesting post made me think of a poem, La Source, by the French poet and writer Théophile Gautier (1811-1872).

Susan said...

I like the poem -- a great one for intermediate French learners, with a few challenging words but mostly very clear language. I'm tempted to find a picture to illustrate each verse and use it in a blog post!

chm said...

Glad you enjoyed La Source. Can’t wait to see your illustrations. Since you liked that poem, you might like another one by the same author.

Susan said...

This one is more flowery (literally and figuratively).

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