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|Chimney Fire Destroys Windsor Home
--An early morning chimney fire in
Windsor has left three people homeless.
Firefighters were called to the 763
Ridge Road home around 5:00 am. The fire
which began in the chimney quickly
spread. The two adults and child living
in the home escaped unharmed thanks to
working smoke detectors. The home is owned by Kathleen
Lassalle. Lasselle's son Troy, his
girlfriend and her daughter had been
living in the home. The Red Cross is currently assisting
|Santa Got Stuck in the Chimney
Read this bed time tale
|On Repairing and Relining Chimneys
Life on a Homestead Blog -
The Old Chimney's Story
white trash. Guy stuck in chimney hit in face -
click here for video
|The Chimney Speaks
(A lesson on your chimney) -
A man who spent five hours naked and stuck in the chimney of his
stepmother's home was arrested on suspicion of being under the
influence of drugs.
Police say the man age 23, locked himself out of
the house and decided to get in on a cable TV wire through the
But the wire broke and he fell, getting stuck
about three-quarters of the way down. He was freed when a
firefighter pushed him to safety.
"We get him up, and he's naked as a jaybird,"
said a police Lt. involved in the rescue mission.
"He tells us he took his clothes off because there would be less
friction going down the chute. We did find his clothes. So that
part checked out."
Authorities were called about 6:15 a.m. A
neighbor heard "faint, distressing" calls since about 2:30 a.m.
and decided to call police. Police say it probably wasn't a
comfortable few hours for the nude man.
"He's not fat," another police man said, "but he used to play
football. He's not that little."
Don't scare the chimney sweep -
The Chimney Sweeps: A Climbing Boy Extract
By Mark M Lichterman
December 24, 1843
Two figures trudged up the dirt road.The man taking long, purposeful strides.
Weighed down by the load he carried, his harsh breath coming in
white plumes, panting, struggling to keep up with Johnson,
Zachariah didn't notice as a single coil of rope slipped off his
shoulder, trailed behind, then tangled in his feet. Tripping, he
fell at the place the dirt road ended and the cobblestone street
Paces ahead, looking over his shoulder, stopping with a sound of
disgust, going back to the fallen boy, Johnson lifted him bodily
onto his feet and with a slap to the back of his head, sent him
stumbling forward again.
Through shame, anger, the cold, or all three, continuing on,
struggling under the weight he carried on his shoulders and in
his arms, Zachariah hunched his head even deeper into the collar
of his coat.
Finally, ahead a half mile or so, the glow of the factory's
furnaces could be seen through the diminishing pre-morning
Soon, the noise of men at work came softly, then, as they walked
closer, the sounds became louder, the voices pronounced.
As the boy and man entered the massive brick and block barn of a
factory, sounds assailed their ears: the irritating noise of
grinding, the tortured whine of cutting steel, the nerve-jarring din of steel
hammering onto steel. Thick, black, greasy smoke hung beneath the
three-story rafters. Dozens of workers could be seen moving, milling, hauling,
straining. Men wearing gloves and aprons made of leather were removing strips
of white-hot metal with steel tongs from three of four huge, coal-fed
furnaces. The fourth, its stack having already been cleaned two-thirds of the
shut down awaiting to be finished.
John Archibald was standing behind his tall, battered foreman's
desk. The desk, on a raised platform, gave the plant foreman a
commanding view of the entire factory.
As the two entered, he saw Johnson first, then, paces behind,
the boy. Putting the quill down, watching as they made their way around
boxes, barrels, machinery and work benches, Lord 'elp 'im! Archibald
thought as he saw the boy struggle beneath the weight he carried.
LOTTE REINIGER - The Little Chimney Sweep -
click here for video.
Chimney Sweep Story
Do you remember the first time you saw
the movie Mary Poppins? Did you ever wonder about the mysterious
lives of the many chimney sweeps in that movie?
The magic of the scene on the rooftops
of London, with chimney sweeps dancing precariously close to the
roof's edge, thrills audiences of many ages. Chimney sweeps are
not only of an era gone by; sweeping is an interesting and
rewarding profession that entails many projects, and has an
Sweeping was begun mostly in England
during the 17th or 18th century, where it was the government's
wishes that all flues, or chimneys, be swept often.
The chimneys of the period were very
large, so small boys, usually sold into slavery from orphanages,
called "climbing boys" were sent up the flue to brush away the
soot by hand. Often, an older more experienced boy followed
behind. If the new boy slowed down or stopped, the boy
underneath would poke the younger boy's feet with needles. It
was because of this and because many children got stuck and died
in chimneys that narrowed at the top, that the Queen of England
supposedly offered a reward for a better way of cleaning the
chimneys. Thus, the rods and brushes that are still used today
came into use. It is also said that once, one of England's kings
had an incident with his horse, and a chimney sweep gentled the
horse and prevented the king from being thrown to the ground.
The king returned the sweep with a gesture that all sweeps would
get one day off per year, by law.
So, how did the profession change from
the early Victorian days to today?
During the 1900's families did prefer to
use other, more convenient forms of heating - gas and
electricity in particular, but because of the two oil crises in
the 1970's, prices of heating fuels soared and many people
decided to go back to cutting and burning their own wood. Often
this was done in fireplaces that had not been properly cleaned
or serviced in a very long time causing many chimney and house
fires. As the popularity of fireplaces increased, so did the
need for chimney sweeps, a trade still growing today.
Some sweeps found the market for this
business on their own, and many others discovered it through an
article that appeared in a 1977 issue of the Mother Earth News,
a popular, alternative lifestyle magazine of that time. The
article regenerated interest in the nearly forgotten trade. It
described the importance and ways of cleaning flues and how to
go about starting a sweeping business.
The traditional outfit of top hat and
tails was worn because wealthy undertakers would give their
clothes away to the sweeps - a very different outfit from the
coverings worn today. In fact, after researching why many of the
early sweeps didn't live past their teen years, it was found
that creosote, a highly combustible by-product of wood or coal
burning, is carcinogenic, which today we know is cancer-causing.
Another myth says that in England it was considered bad manners
to bathe. So sweeps in England never washed the soot off their
bodies. It is said that they took the soot from the day's
chimney cleaning's with them and made a pillow out of it.
Today's sweep wears coveralls and most
use respirator filters so as not to breathe the soot because it
What does the modern sweep do? Although
America's chimney service is still in its infancy, the modern
sweep takes pride in being able to diagnose, service, and repair
chimneys and venting systems that serve a full range of fuels,
such as coal, wood, gas, oil, pellets, corn, and more. Some
install wood burning appliances and reline damaged chimneys.
Some even work with venting systems for natural gas appliances.
In 1988, a team of National Chimney Sweep Guild certified sweeps
had the once-in-a-lifetime experience of servicing the most
famous household fireplaces in the nation. The address - 1600
Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, D.C. Although a highly
recognized home, the job was a fairly routine one, yet still
quite memorable. The sweeps began their talk by doing a video
scan with a special camera of each chimney, determining what
each one would require. Some needed as little as a routine
sweep, others as much as a major masonry repair. The team of 10
shared this about one chimney, " . .we found that an entire
section of tile and chimney was missing, so we were virtually
sweeping the backside of the wallpaper in one of the more
historic rooms in the mansion."
In some cultures, sweeps have the
authority to tell someone not to use his chimney and can even
put a person in jail if he does - chimney cops! Often, a sweep
will find very interesting objects in a chimney. For example,
some have found anything from real animals to decoys.
How do chimney sweeps learn their trade?
In Canada, there are a series of courses and tests that are
taken before one can be WETT (Wood Energy Technical Training)
certified. In the United States, the trade can be learned
through the Sweeps School or there is a testing procedure for
certification by the National Chimney Sweep Guild through the
Chimney Safety Institute of America. They learn how to clean
the damper, fire shelf, and firebox. They also learn how to
diagnose, service, and Repair many problems.
Chimney sweeping has come a long way
over a long period of time. As one sweep remarked after working
on the White House, "We all regarded it as an honor to be there,
to work shoulder to shoulder with respected Colleagues, and
there was just a real team spirit and cooperation. That's what's
so great about chimney sweeps; there's a sense of fellowship
that you don't get in other industries.
SANTA CLAUSTROPHOBIA -