The Industrial Revolution came first in England, second where now Belgium is. During the years
1830-1839 Belgium separated from the Netherlands, and in the same years Pierre Regout set up his
pottery, Sphinx Céramique, within the city walls of Maastricht. He became so rich that he had a
castle built for each one of his ten children. King William the First would sometimes stay with him at
Vaeshartelt. In Vaeshartelt was a great party when his labourers came to thank Regout. The son that
took over the factories was accused of exploitation of his own workmen.
There came another competing pottery, the Société Céramique. Maastricht became the first
industrial town in the Netherlands: the town made paper in the so-called 'lommelenfabriek' (rag factory), it exhausted
the hill called Sint-Pietersberg to win cement (ENCI), there were factories for glass
and crystal, cigars, rubber, etc.
As to the separation of Belgium: Maastricht stayed Dutch because general Dibbets, whose
garrison camped in Maastricht, acted boldly. Many Maastricht people then and later on preferred to be Belgian.
'Hollander' was a sobriquet during many decades to come.