'Alum Works', North Yorkshire, 1814.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Hand-coloured aquatint by Robert Havell after George Walker from 'The Costume of Yorkshire' (1814) by George Walker (1781-1856), published by Robinson & Son of Leeds. The image shows men working at an alum works on the North Yorkshire coast. Alum, which is used in the tanning and dyeing industries, was extensively quarried on the North Yorkshire coast from the early 17th century until around 1870, with dramatic effects on the area's landscape which are still clearly visible today. 'The Costume of Yorkshire' recorded the social customs, pastimes and occupations of the people of Yorkshire at the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. It contained 40 aquatints together with more than 100 pages of text describing the scenes in both English and French.