Fire-damaged ship, Oostenburg, Holland, 1690.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Engraving by Jan van der Heiden of a ship at the East India Company shipyard. The ship burst into flames on Whitsunday, 14 May 1690. Being a holiday, it burnt for one and a half hours before fire-fighters arrived. Once the fire engines were used, the fire was soon extinguished. 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 fire-fighting in the 17th and 18th century.