Black Country Boulders, or Quarry Men’s Cobbles

Imagine, amidst the chaos of the industrial revolution, young men labouring in the rich limestone quarries of the Black Country. Toiling in what was once an ancient sea, they stumbled upon scores of fossils, and with industrious hands, they polished and worked the stone, creating tokens and gifts to give to their loved ones or to sell to the wealthy.

Clay pebbles with a Trilobite perched on top
A set of clay "cobbles" with trilobites attached, drying and ready to fire.
photograph of an old couple
Great (great?) Grand Parents (Webb - approx 1860 - 1870) She made chains from home and died aged 62. He worked with pick and shovel, unsure of his date of death.
These Black Country Boulders, or Quarry Men’s Cobbles as some areas called them, crafted from clay and glazed in the local Woodsetton Pottery Studio, are not the actual fossils found in the Sedgely Beacon and Beacon Hill quarries of the 19th century, but rather, they are imagined creations that pay tribute to the hardworking ancestors of the Black Country, whose tireless efforts can still be felt nearly 200 years later.
a black and white sketch of dark skies and furnaces
The Tartarian Black Country Landscape

One comment

Comments are closed.