Printed on premium quality, glossy, photo paper
Available in 3 sizes
Printed in the USA
The town was founded in 1832 by the Belgian industrialist James Mayer and named after his birthplace, Gosselies (Hainaut). The first blast furnace opened in 1836. In 1840, a second one was built. By 1850 there were already more than 2,000 workers living around the factory site. In 1900 it had grown to become an important coal mining center with about 25 mines operated by De Beers Consolidated Mines Ltd., employing some 7500 miners and producing over 1 million tons of coal per year from their own mines at Gosselies as well as from those they leased elsewhere on behalf of their parent company based in South Africa. This made them one of the largest employers outside London at that time but also led to major strikes during World War I when wages were cut back due to inflation caused by war-time shortages leading many men being killed or injured during violent clashes between strikers and strike breakers brought into Belgium from England under contract for this purpose; see Battle of Charleroi (1914).