Charleroi, now a city of 200,000, is comparatively young by Belgian standards, having been established only in 1666. Industrialization came early to Charleroi; it sits at the intersection of several major highways and near a coal producing region. The city is divided into upper and lower halves, with the lower half built on territory that was once an island in the Sambre River before the water was redirected. Two museums of note are the Musee des Beaux Arts, and the Glass Museum, dedicated to the history of glassmaking throughout the ages.
Couillet, Dampremy, Gilly, Gosselies, Goutroux, Jumet, Lodelinsart, Marchienne-au-Pont, Marcinelle, Monceau-sur-Sambre, Mont-sur-Marchienne, Montignies-sur-Sambre, Ransart, and Roux are boroughs within the municipal district of Charleroi.