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France had already begun to industrialize during the mid-1700s. Progress was delayed in the late 1700's and early 1800's because of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars. In 1850, most of France's iron production still came from expensive charcoal furnaces. After 1850, however, coke rapidly replaced charcoal for smelting and puddling.  

A poor transportation system stunted French industry during most of the 1800's. The transportation system had fallen into bad condition during the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars. The government deepened and widened many rivers and canals but these improvements did not meet the needs of growing industries. In 1842, the government also approved the building of a national railway system. Complications delayed the construction though. It wasn’t until after World War II was there great change and increased industrialization.

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[Overview of the Entire Industrial Revolution]

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