The coal mines: Limburg’s ‘black gold’ > About the collection

Nico Jesse, the Oranje Nassau Mine I seen from the slagheap, Heerlen  (1952-1953)

The collection of the Dutch Photography Museum includes twentieth-century mining photos. These illustrate the rise, development, decline and loss of the mining industry within a period of some forty years. The museum has selected 1,912 images from the archives of twelve photographers, all of whom professionals, with the exception of Nol Pepermans. The selection was primarily made from archives of negatives, all of which are in the care of the museum.

The photographers are:

     - Freek Aal (1923-2004) 
     - Bert Buurman (1915-1998)
     - Martien Coppens (1908-1986)
     - Bob van Dam/Combipress (1928-2002)
     - Nico Jesse (1911-1976)
     - Aart Klein (1909-2001)
     - Dolf Kruger (1923)
     - Werner Mantz (1901-1983)
     - Cas Oorthuys (1908-1975)
     - Nol Pepermans (1920-2007)
     - Hans Spies (1905-1973)
     - Ed van Wijk (1917-1992).

Most of the photos were taken by Nico Jesse, Aart Klein, Cas Oorthuys and Nol Pepermans. The earliest photos in the collection date back to 1939 (Cas Oorthuys), the latest illustrate the disappearance of the mines in the 1970s (Nol Pepermans). These photos are quite special because they also feature work underground in the mines themselves.

Learn more about the historical context:

The worker visualized >>
Commissioned visualization >>
From working mine to closure >>
Photography in the dark >>

Examples from this collection The coal mines: Limburg’s ‘black gold’

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