The mines in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais coal-field - three centuries of mining
In northern France, the extraction of coal has a long history stretching over almost three centuries. The first coal seam was found in Hardinghem in the vicinity of Boulogne-sur-Mer around 1660. However, this seam turned out to be meagre and its mining difficult. A sustainable beginning of coal-mining was established only several decades later in the region around Valenciennes. The article describes the main places of development of coal-mining in northern France taking into account aspects of economic, technological and social history up to the second half of the twentieth century.