Aftermath of a fire in an oil mill, Waterland, Holland, 1699.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Engraving by Jan van der Heiden. Lightning started a fire in a windmill near the village of Wormer, Holland (the Netherlands). It was saved by two small fire engines. Only a part of the thatched roof was burned, as well as some of the thin lattice work to which the straw had been attached. From 'Beschryving der nieuwlyks uitgevonden en geotrojeerde slang-brand-spuiten en haare wyze van brand-blusen' ('Fire engines with hoses and methods of fighting fires') by van der Heiden and his son Jan, (Amsterdam, 1735). Father and son were designers and manufacturers of Europe's best fire fighting equipment and Fire-Masters General of Amsterdam. The book is the most important source of technical information for firefighting in the 17th and 18th century.