A look at

ALAN St. HILL BROCK`S

FAMOUS FIREWORK BOOK

with scans of the wonderful artwork





check out www.fireworkmuseum.co.uk and www.cyberheritage.co.uk 




In the early part of the 20th century, Alan Brock, an architect wrote his famous book on fireworks and pyrotechnics, if you are lucky you may be able to obtain an original copy by an inter-library loan, if not then please enjoy these scans of the best images.
Scans of firework bursts; these are Chinese artworks I believe and look nice framed. They must be quite old as to me they have a certain feel to them that I can`t put into words. The captions are in Chinese or other eastern language. 1........2...........3..........4.............5..........6........

Portrait of Alan Brock`s brother Wing Commander Frank Arhur Brock in naval uniform.
Traditional firework making tools can be seen in this illustration, and here the "art" is demonstrated.
This illustration shows types of firework known to Capt. Brock and to many of us today.
Here we can see Roman Candle manufacture, by traditional means, very much a "hands on job." Note special anti-static footwear. These candles certainly did the job, what a wonderful effect. Lots of skill in manufacture was obviuosly matched with skill in display design and firing.
This photo shows a rocket`s grain being formed, on what I believe was called a spindle, wonder if he ever missed and hit his fingers!

Now this is what I call lance work or set pieces, just what would this cost today? Would spectators appreciate it, perhaps all that can be "wow`ed" and "ooohhhh`ed" at are giant shell bursts! A...........B.................C..............D.................E..........

When I was a lad...as they say, I remember Jumping Jacks, they would jump in all directions...yet somehow I survived to adulthood despite these deadly devices..NOT! Sadly for future generations as these are now BANNED by our nanny state, youngsters will no longer have the fun of diving and ducking out of the way of these "killer" devices...so in lieu of this the kids mug old grannies instead! Nobody I know was ever maimed by this killer in a box...modern media talk!...yet I know personally of women who have been mugged...moral here somewhere. Anyway, for a trip down memory lane, here is their manufacture.....1...........2.......

Many displays were graced by parachute rockets and shells supporting magnesium lights, here is the glow of such a shell

Human fireworks were popular foe a time. This being operators dressed in fire-proof asbestos suits they would have lance work attached to them....this one appears to be a policeman!

Catherine wheels are a rare item these days, it seems that they are expensive to manufacture. This is not a catherine wheel, but a giant stationary set piece wheel, just how big it is is pretty amazing, it is at the Crystal Palace, London, England.

e-mail Steve at steve@fireworkmuseum.co.uk