Reynolds, Paul, Early Colliery Engines at Swansea, 1730 – c1840, Transactions of the 2nd International Early Engines Conference, Volume 1, IEEC & ISSES, 2021 [ISBN: 9781872986241], pp.101-129
In general terms, large scale exploitation of the south Wales coalfield did not start until the second quarter of the nineteenth century, well past the period where the Newcomen-type engine would have featured in colliery installations. However, the coal trade in those areas of the coalfield within easy reach of navigable rivers and seas developed much earlier and was well established by the Tudor period. The area in and around Swansea was one of these areas and by the seventeenth century was the UKs third largest coal exporting port. Development of the copper industry in the following century for which Swansea was renowned, encouraged further development of coal mining locally, bringing with it capital from external sources. From 1730 onwards, a significant number of Newcomen-type engines were erected locally and this account describes the background and context for the approximately 48 engines erected between 1730 and 1840.