Why do hurricane lanterns look like that?
Kerosene lamps are widely used for lighting in rural areas of Africa and Asia, where electricity is not distributed or is too costly. As of 2005, kerosene and other fuel-based illumination methods consume an estimated 77 billion litres of fuel per year, equivalent to 1.3 million barrels of oil per day. This is comparable to annual U.S. jet-fuel consumption of 76 billion litres per year. - Wikipedia
How the gas mantle made lamps 10X brighter
The book he mentions, Disenchanted Night: The Industrialization of Light in the Nineteenth Century, sounds like it might be interesting. You can get a paperback copy from Barnes & Noble for $30, or if you have money to burn you can get a hardback copy from Amazon for $900. Are you kidding me? Who shells out that kind of money just to get the hardback version? All I can say is that the world is full of strange and wondrous things.
He recommends a video about limelight, but I like this one better.
The Lime Light