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Cape Colony and Heating Exhibition - Expo Paris 1889

Missing picture

The next large pavilion is divided into two parts.

The first part contains the exhibition of the Kimberley diamond mines of the Cape Colony. The complete processing of the diamond soil is shown. The company has brought 50,000 kilos of soil from the Biers mine especially for this purpose. A huge working machine receives this earth in bags of 100 kilos, where it is immediately mixed with water, the whole being passed through a long inclined cylindrical sieve, which is constantly rotating.

The pieces that are too large are rejected and the rest passes with the water through this first sieve. The large pieces are crushed and put back into the machine. Then the whole thing arrives at a large basin, where the paddles, constantly in motion, make a very liquid paste with the earth and water. This kind of sludge passes through increasingly fine sieves.

The lighter parts are carried away by the water. The lightest parts are carried away by the water and washed until only a clean, black residue remains, resembling crushed coal and containing diamonds, garnets, micas, pebbles and various stones. This residue is then sorted out by hand, an operation that is of particular interest to visitors as the employees often find quite large diamonds in the mass.

In the centre is a diamond cutting workshop. In the background, a relief map shows the open pit of the Bulfontein diamond mine. The mine is 350 metres in diameter, from which 2 million tonnes of earth are removed annually, producing 500,000 carats of diamonds, worth 12 million francs.

The non-electric heating and lighting pavilion contains all the different types of stoves and lamps possible.

Cadé, Viville, Choubersky stoves, automatic and non-automatic rotisseries, universal stoves, rolling fireplaces, gas burners with more or less intensive flames, recuperative lamps, gas fireplaces, with visible or invisible flames, albo-carbon lighting, hygienic heating, fans, pilot lights. In short, everything you need for heating, lighting and cooking in the most hygienic conditions, it seems.

©Livre d'Or de l'Exposition - S. Favière.