e beset the workmen, in regard to the making of flasks, the selection of a suitable loam and parting; and the eventual success is connected with a pleasing episode in the history of mechanical industry, which is substantially as follows:—
About 1709, Abraham Darby, of Bristol, had a Welsh boy in his service named John Thomas.
The master had been endeavoring to cast iron with but indifferent success, and the boy stated that he saw through the difficulty.
They stayed after the workmen had left, and cast an iron pot in a mold of fine sand with a two-part flask, and with air-holes for the escape of steam, etc. From 1709 to 1828 a business partnership was maintained in the persons of themselves and their descendants, and the process is stated to have been kept secret at Coalbrookdale till about 1800.
From the terms of the account, it would seem to have been hollow-ware that particularly bothered them; and no one who is acquainted with the art of casting iron-ware of that description w