Clackmannanshire Accidents post-1855

This section contains newspaper reports on selected accidents in Clackmannanshire. Please check the indexes in the Accidents Section for other areas.

22 April 1856

Shocking Coal-Pit Accident – On the afternoon of Tuesday last , an accident of a shocking description occurred at No. 1 pit of the Clackmannan Coal Company , situated on Hillend Farm, whereby Simon Cadzean, a collier, was killed. The deceased, who acted as bottomer in the pit, was in the act of being brought to the surface, after his day's work was over, in a cage, in the usual manner. Instead, however, of the engine being brought to a stand when the cage had reached the pit mouth, it was carried up towards the pulley-wheel in the frame above. Cadzean seeing this , must have at once apprehended danger , as he leaped from off the cage before reaching the wheel, on to the roof of a shed close to the mouth of the pit . So rapid was the ascent of the cage, however, that the deceased was ejected on to the roof, which being much sloped, Cadzean rolled off it right into the pit, and was precipitated to the bottom , a depth of about seventy fathoms! The poor man, in his descent , oscillated from side to side of the pit , and his body, in consequence , was frightfully mutilated. His head was terribly shattered, and all but severed from his body. - Alloa Advertiser [Scotsman 30 April 1856]

14 October 1856

Fatal Coat-Pit Accident. - On the morning of Tuesday last, John Snaddon, a boy about fourteen years of age, lost his life in No. 1 Holton Pit of the Alloa Colliery, under the following circumstances - The deceased acted as a driver of one of the ponies in the underground workings, and it would appear about nine o'clock, the breakfast hour, he had ascended the shaft along with the pit-bottomer, for the purpose of taking down breakfast for one of the workmen, which he learned, on coming to the surface, had been previously sent down. It is a rule in the colliery not to lower any of the workmen unless the pit-bottomer is at his post, but as the engineman was about to raise the underground oversman from the upper seam in the pit to the surface, and as he was advised by the pit-bottomer to lower the deceased at same time in the cage which would descend, the boy stepped on the cage and the engine was set in motion. The engine was stopped on the ascending cage reaching the upper seam, to allow the oversman to step on to it, the descending cage, of course, coming to a stand at same time. The engine was set in motion in a few seconds again, until the ascending cage reached the pit-mouth, when the descending one would at same time reach the bottom. In about ten minutes afterwards, the boy was discovered lying at the pit-bottom, with the cage resting upon him, and, on its being raised, life was found to be extinct. It was at once apparent that the boy had fallen down the shaft; and it is supposed that this must have happened when the engine was stopped, the boy imagining that the cage had reached the bottom of the pit and had walked over the side, or that he had lost his balance. In all likelihood he fell a depth of about forty fathoms. He was all right in the cage as it passed the upper seam. The boy's body presented very few external marks of injury. [Glasgow Herald 22 October 1856]

21 March 1861

Fatal Coal-Pit Accident - On the morning of Thursday last, a miner of the name of Hunter, while employed in one of the coalpits of the Alloa Colliery Company, was killed by the falling upon him of a piece of coal which he had been mining. Medical assistance was obtained, but it was of no avail. [Dundee Courier 25 March 1861]

NB From death cert, full name was John Hunter

24 August 1861

Alloa – Colliery Accidents – On Friday forenoon, Andrew Hunter, a miner in the employment of the Alloa Coal Company, met with his death while working in No 1 pit, situated at New Sauchie. At the moment of the unfortunate accident, Hunter was employed blasting the coal, and part of the roof falling in, crushed him so severely that death ensued almost instantaneously. - On Friday afternoon, William Harrower, a miner, residing at Holton, New Sauchie, met with an accident while working in Jellyhorn coal pit. Part of the roof fell upon him, whereby he was bruised on the thighs, feet, and head, but the injuries are believed not to be of a serious nature. [Alloa Advertiser, quoted in Scotsman 26 August 1861]

28 October 1861

Fatal Coal-Pit Accident - On Monday morning, Joseph Patterson, aged twenty-two years, met with his death in No. 3 pit of the Alloa Coal Company, by the falling in upon him of part of the roof. A considerable time was unavoidably occupied in removing the load by which the unfortunate man was killed. [Falkirk Herald 7 November 1861]

11 March 1862

Fatal Coal Pit Accident – Two Lives Lost - On Tuesday afternoon, an accident, which resulted in the loss of two lives, and by which several others were endangered, occurred in the coal pit at Devonside, near Tillicoultry, known as the west pit. While the pitmen were prosecuting their labours, a mass of rock, weighing about 2 tons, fell from the roof of the working upon two of them, named respectively William Allan and John Cook, both belonging to the village of Coalsnaughton. Some of their fellow workmen were so near when it fell, that their escape may be considered miraculous. The bodies of the unfortunate men were so much crushed as to be almost unrecognisable. Both have left widows and young children [Dunfermline Press – quoted in Herald March 14 1862]

18 June 1862

Alloa Fatal Coal Pit Accident – On Wednesday forenoon, a miner named John Condy Paterson, while at work in one of the Kennet Pits, near Clackmannan, was instantly deprived of life, by a stone falling from the roof upon his head. The deceased was in his 20th year and leaves a widowed mother who was dependant upon him for support [Herald June 20 1862]

21 October 1862

Alloa - Fatal Coal Pit Accident - On Tuesday morning, while a boy belonging to Kincardine, named Malcolm Mitchell, aged 12 years, was working in pit No. 2, Kennet Colliery, along with his father and an older brother, at large block of stone fell from the roof, killing him instantaneously. [Glasgow Herald 24 October 1862]

21 January 1863

Fatal Accident.-A fatal accident occurred at Clackmannan Colliery on Wednesday last, to a man named John Allan. He was at work in the Kerse Pit, when a heavy stone measuring upwards of six yards in length fell upon him, crushing him so severely as to kill him on the spot. A boy named Russell, who was at work close to the place where the accident occurred, gave the alarm, and the body of the unfortunate man was taken from beneath the superincumbent weight, and removed to his late residence. Allan leaves a wife and three children, the youngest only three months old. [Dunfermline Saturday Press 24 January 1863]

30 September 1863

Fatal Coal Pit Accident - On Wednesday afternoon, while a man, named Isaac, was at work in one of the Kennetpans coal pits, a quantity of rubbish fell upon him from the roof, bruising him seriously in various parts of his person. He lingered till Thursday morning, when death ended his sufferings. He has left a widow and a young family. [Dunfermline Saturday Press 3 October 1863]

11 June 1864

Fatal Pit Accident - A young man, named Thomas Snaddon, was killed instantaneously in one of the Alloa Coal Company's pits at Sauchie, on Saturday, by a portion of the roof falling upon him while he was at work. Snaddon was a Volunteer, and his death is the first that has occurred in the Alloa Rifle Corps since its formation. The funeral which took place on Tuesday afternoon, was attended by a numerous body of the Volunteers, the fine band of the corps heading the melancholy procession. The coffin was laid in the grave with the ordinary formalities. The assemblage of spectators was very great. [Dunfermline Saturday Press 18 June 1864]

15 October 1870

Fatal Coal Pit Accident - A miner, named Peter Dawson, aged 35, received fatal injuries while at work in a pit near the village of New Sauchie, by a large piece of coal falling upon him from the face of the working on Friday night last. Dawson only survived a few hours after being conveyed home. [Falkirk Herald - Thursday 20 October 1870]

28 December 1870

Alloa - Miner Killed. - A miner named Francis Hunter was on Tuesday afternoon working in Garnstone Pit near Fishcross, when a large quantity of debris fell from the facing, completely covering him. Notwithstanding the united exertions of his brother and some others of his fellow-workmen, who witnessed the occurrence, two hours elapsed ere he could be extricated, and he was then found to be dead. [Glasgow Herald 29 December 1870]

Alloa - Fatal Coal-pit Accident - The other day, a miner named Francis Hunter was working in Garnstone Pit, near Fishcross, when a quantity of debris fell from the facing, burying him beneath it. Two hours elapsed before he could be extricated, when life was found to be extinct. [Falkirk Herald 5 January 1871]

30 December 1872

Fatal Coal Pit Accident Near Alloa - On Saturday a miner named William Love, while stepping from a hutch at the second shaft of a pit, missed his footing and fell to the bottom, a depth of 20 fathoms. He died from the injuries he had sustained in a few hours afterwards. Deceased was 28 years of age and unmarried [Herald 1 January 1873]

14 September 1877

Fatal Pit-head Accident - On Friday, while two pit-head workers, named Jane Cochrane or Fraser and Ann Paterson, were shifting the hutches at Holton pit-head, near Alloa, some of the roofing, which consisted of iron plates, gave way. One of them falling upon Mrs Fraser, broke her right arm, and completely smashed her right leg above the ankle. The women were taken to Alloa Hospital, where Mrs Fraser died the same night about seven o'clock. Paterson is in a hopeful condition. [Aberdeen Journal 17 September 1877]

3 July 1879

Alloa – Fatal Pit Accident. - Early yesterday morning, a lad named Archibald Bennet, aged 14, residing at New Sauchie, was killed at No, 2 Holson Pit, belonging to the Alloa Coal Company. Bennet was employed in the underground workings driving a pony for bringing hutches on a line of rails to and from the bottom of the shaft, and between two of these hutches, laden with coal, he was found quite dead. An examination of the body showed that death had been caused by dislocation of the neck , and severe bruises about the head. [Scotsman 4 July 1879]

20 December 1882

Tillicoultry – Fatal Accident in a Coal Mine - On Wednesday afternoon a miner, named Robert Allan residing in Devonside, Tillicoultry, was instantaneously killed in Bessie Glen Coal Mine, belonging to the Alloa and Tillicoultry Colliery Company. A large stone from the roof fell upon him while he was engaged in keeping the hutches in position on the rails as they were being drawn to the pit mouth by an engine. The deceased has left a widow and six children. [Scotsman 22nd December 1882]

16 April 1889

Tillicoultry – Serious Accident – Yesterday morning, while a miner named James Hunter, residing at Devonside, Tillicoultry, was working in Furnacebank Pit, a piece of the roof gave way, and knocked him to the ground. He sustained severe injuries, both of his legs being broken. [Glasgow Herald 17 April 1889]

13 February 1890

Alloa - Fatal Result of a Pit Accident - Yesterday morning William Paterson, miner, New Sauchie, died in Alloa Hospital from the effects of an accident sustained in No. 2 Holton Pit, belonging to Alloa Colliery, about a fortnight ago. While holing a large piece of coal fell upon him from the roof and hurt him internally. He was upwards of 50 years of age, and has left a widow and grown-up family.[Glasgow Herald 24 February 1890]

27 December 1892

Fatal Pit Accident - A fatal accident occurred on Tuesday afternoon between two and three o'clock at Furnacebank Pit, Devon Colliery, belonging to the Alloa Coal Company. A lad named Robert Paterson, aged 14, pony driver, while being drawn to the surface accidentally fell out of the cage. When picked up the unfortunate lad was dead, the head being severed from the body. [Dundee Courier 29 December 1892]

17 August 1898

A Miner’s Startling Death - A miner named Teddy Kerrick, employed at Furnacebank Pit, belonging to the Alloa Coal Company, on stepping off the cage at the bottom of the pit this morning, fell forward, and on being lifted up it was found that he was dead. Death is supposed to have been caused by heart disease. Deceased was an elderly man, and leaves a widow and grown-up family. [Edinburgh Evening News 17 August 1898]

2 April 1900

Alloa - Fatal Mining Accident - Thomas Stansbury (36), miner, died in the Clackmannanshire County (Accident) Hospital from wounds received in the course of his employment at Furnacebank Pit on Monday. [Glasgow Herald 6 April 1900]

8 April 1901

Coal Pit Tragedy At Alloa – Two Brothers Killed – Bodies Discovered By A Third Brother - The County Police were informed last night that a melancholy fatal accident had place at Furnacebank Pit, resulting in the death of two brothers, James Harrower (23), married, Brick Row, Devonside, and Andrew Harrower, jun., 15 Woodhead Row, Coalsnaughton. Both were engaged in the underground workings of the pit, the former as miner and the latter as drawer, when a large piece of coal weighing about two tons came away on the top of them. They were discovered by another brother, and after the coal had been removed it was found that both men were quite dead, having apparently been under it for several hours. They had stated to some fellow workmen that they intended to blast, but it was evident that they had not done so. [Evening Telegraph 9 April 1901]

3 August 1901

Fatal Accident To An Alloa Miner - A distressing fatality occurred at Furnacebank Pit, the property of the Alloa Coal Company, Saturday. A miner named John Morgan, residing at Devon Square, Fishcross, was engaged holing the nine feet section when a large piece of coal weighing about 13 cwts. fell on the top of him, crushing him severely and breaking his left thigh. He was removed the County Hospital, where he died the same evening. [Evening Telegraph 6 August 1901]

16 January 1903

Fatal Accident At Alloa - A miner named Andrew Drummond, residing in Green Square, Alva, and in the employment of the Alloa Coal Company, was fatally injured while working at the coal face in the underground workings of Furnacebank Pit, Devon Colliery. A fall of coal overwhelmed him, and when relieved he only lived a few minutes. Drummond leaves a widow and family in Alva. [Scotsman 19 January 1903]

2 December 1922

Man Killed In Alloa Pit - A miner named David Hutton, residing at The Square, Clackmannan, was engaged on Saturday morning at his usual employment in the underground workings of Whinhall Pit, No. 2, belonging to the Alloa Coal Company (Ltd.), when a large stone fell from the roof, and killed him almost instantaneously. The deceased was about 30 years of ago, and unmarried. [Scotsman 4 December 1922]

12 June 1923

Pit Accident Near Clackmannan. - A miner named William Hall, residing at Clackmannan , met with a serious accident in the underground: workings of Brucefield Pit near Clackmannan. While engaged at the face a heavy stone fell from the roof upon him, causing serious internal injuries. He was removed to the County Accidents Hospital at Alloa. [Scotsman 13 June 1923]

25 February 1924

Clackmannan Pit Accident - William M'Gough (32), a stone-miner, residing at The Square, Clackmannan , had a narrow escape on Friday night in the underground workings of Tullygarth Pit, While engaged brushing a road in the Hopehill section of the pit, a stone weighing 6 cwts. fell upon him from the roof. He was immediately rescued b y some of his colleagues, but it was found that he had been seriously injured about the back and upper part of his body. He was removed to Alloa Hospital. [Scotsman 25 February 1924]

23 January 1925

Clackmannanshire Miner Killed - A miner named Robert Hunter (22), married, residing at Ramsay Street, Coalsnaughton, met with a fatal accident in the underground workings of the Devon Colliery, belonging to the Alloa Coal Company. He was knocked down and seriously injured by a runaway hutch, and died on the way to the County Accidents Hospital. He leaves a widow and child. [The Scotsman 26 January 1925]

February 1925

Accident to Alloa Miner - While engaged in the underground workings at Tullygarth Colliery, near Clackmannan, an Alloa miner named Edward Young, 32, was knocked to the ground by a large stone from the roof. When assistance was forthcoming, it was found that the unfortunate man had been seriously injured about the lower part of the body. Dr Hetherington, Clackmannan, who was soon on the spot, ordered the man's removal to the County Accidents Hospital. [The Scotsman 9 February 1925]

15 April 1925

Lochgelly Miners Injured – While Thomas Turner, 10 Grainger Street, Lochgelly and Francis Reilly, residing at [illegible] Road, Alloa, both miners, were engaged in the underground workings of Brucefield Colliery, near Clackmannan on Wednesday afternoon, a large piece of stone fell from the roof. Reilly received severe internal injuries and Turner severe injuries to his back. Both men were conveyed to the County Hospital. Their condition is considered serious [Dunfermline Journal 18 April 1925]

2 June 1927

Alloa Pit Accident - Miner Killed -  Two Injured - While three miners were engaged at the “face” in one of the sections of the underground workings of Devon Colliery near Alloa, belonging to the Alloa Coal Company Ltd, yesterday afternoon, they were overwhelmed by a heavy fall from the roof. When assistance arrived and the men were extricated, it was found that John Mitchell, Devon Village, was dead. James Wright, Devonbank House, was seriously injured and had to be removed to the County Accidents Hospital. The other man, named Paterson, escaped with slight injuries, and was conveyed to his home in Greenfield Street, Alloa. [Scotsman 3 June 1927]

21 August 1929

Tillicoultry Miner Killed - A fatality occurred at Devon colliery about 7 pm. on Wednesday evening. It appears that a miner named Daniel Snaddon (39), who resided at 7 Langour, Devonside Tillicoultry, and was employed as a stripper, had been engaged at his usual employment at No. 10 Branch, West Side, 10 inch, of the colliery, when a large piece of stone weighing about one ton, fell from the roof, pinning him to the ground, and inflicting internal injuries. He was attended at the colliery by a doctor, and later removed to Stirling Infirmary where he died. He leaves a widow and two of a family. [Scotsman 23 August 1929]

15 February 1930

Fatal Result of Burning Accident - Alexander Stewart, washerman, Mercer Street, Kincardine, died in Clackmannan County Hospital on Saturday as the result of injuries received at Brucefield Colliery, Clackmannan the previous Tuesday. He had been endeavouring to thaw the slide of a coal-washing machine by means of lighted waste and naphtha, when the can he was using caught fire and exploded, scorching him severely on the head, face, and arms. [Scotsman 17 February 1930]

15 November 1932

Clackmannan Miner Killed - Matthew M'Leod, Craigie Terrace, Clackmannan, was employed at a section in the underground workings of Tulligarth pit yesterday forenoon when a fall from the roof pinned him to the footway. When extricated he was found to be dead. [Scotsman 16 November 1932]

3 November 1933

Well-Known Clackmannanshire Miner Killed - A distressing accident occurred yesterday afternoon at Meta Pit, near Alloa, when Mr W. Mitchell, J.P., Sauchie, was instantaneously killed. Mr Mitchell was employed at the picking -table on the pithead when a revolving shaft caught his clothing, and he was whirled round. The machinery was immediately stopped, but he was found to be dead. The deceased was well known in the county, and had been officially associated with the Fife, Clackmannan, and Kinross miners' Association for many years. He took a prominent part in the Co-operative movement, was a staunch supporter of the I.L.P., and had served for close upon three terms with the School-Management Committee of Alloa and district. For his public services he was made a Justice of the Peace of the county several years ago. Four months ago Mr Mitchell's eldest son was killed in Devon Pit by the fall of a large stone from the roof. [Scotsman 4 November 1933]

12 May 1936

Coalsnaughton Miner's Fatal Accident - Robert Sneddon, miner, School Terrace, Coalsnaughton, who was injured in Meta pit on Tuesday, when a rake of hutches broke loose and crushed him against the wall has died in Clackmannan County Accident Hospital. [Scotsman 14 May 1936]

30 June 1937

Fatal Pit Accident - Two miners were injured - one of them fatally - in an accident at Devon Colliery, near Alloa, yesterday afternoon. James Cook, Ochilview, Devonside, died of his injuries when he was overtaken, along with two other miners, by a rake of runaway hutches in the underground workings of the colliery. James Baxter, 51 Alexander Street, Devonside, was removed to Clackmannan County Hospital in a serious condition as a result of the accident . The third man, Robert Turnbull, 6 Greenfield Street, Alloa, escaped uninjured. [Scotsman 1 July 1937]

26 August 1937

A 36-year-old miner was fatally injured in an accident at Meta Pit, Fishcross, near Alloa, late on Wednesday night. Mungo Syme, 15 Grandra Row, Sauchie, near Alloa, was pinned to the ground by a stone weighing two tons, which fell from the roof. Two men working, in the near vicinity went to his aid. The rescuers, by means of an iron rail, tried to lever the stone from Syme's body, and after half an hour succeeded in doing so. It was found, however, that he was dead. [Scotsman 27 August 1937]

Miner Killed by Two-Ton Stone - A 36-year-old miner was fatally injured in an accident at Meta Pit, Fishcross, near Alloa, late last night. Mungo Syme, 15 Grandra Row, Sauchie, near Alloa, was pinned to the ground by a stone weighing two tons, which fell from the roof. Two men working in the near vicinity went to his aid. The rescuers, by means of an iron rail, tried to lever the stone from Syme's body, and after half an hour succeeded in doing so. It was found, however, that he was dead. Syme was supposed to start work at nine o'clock last night, but got an hour off because he was attending the Falkirk- Rangers football match. He had not been long started when the accident happened. [Evening Telegraph 26 August 1937]

26 November 1937

Thomas Harrower, 11 Hill Street, Tillicoultry, died in Clackmannan County Hospital, Alloa, yesterday morning as the result of injuries sustained in the underground workings of Meta Pit, near Fishcross, on Tuesday, when a large stone fell from the roof. [Glasgow Herald 27 November 1937]

18 May 1938

Clackmannan Miner Killed - James M'Lean (56) , Wester Craig, Clackmannan, a machineman at Tulligarth Colliery , near Clackmannan, which belongs to the Tullygarth Coal Company, was fatally injured yesterday when a stone weighing three tons fell on top of him. Death was instantaneous , his neck being fractured. [Scotsman 19 May 1938]

7 October 1938

Injury To Mineworker - Robert M'Andrew, mineworker, aged 23 c/o Fleming, 42 Glasshouse Loan, Alloa, who was employed in Brucefield Colliery, Clackmannan, was struck to the ground by a fall of stone yesterday. Suffering from severe shock and injuries to the spine, he was removed to Clackmannan Accidents Hospital. [Scotsman 8 October 1938]

14 October 1938

Colliery Accident - Pinned to the ground by a fall of material from the roof while at work underground in Meta Colliery, near Fishcross, Clackmannan, yesterday morning, a 54-year old miner, Robert M'Gill, residing at 12 Blackfaulds Street, Coalsnaughton, was seriously injured, and was removed to Clackmannan County Accidents Hospital, Alloa. M'Gill received severe spinal injuries. [Scotsman 15 October 1938]

22 October 1938

Miner Succumbs To Injuries - William Drummond (40), miner, who resided at 12 Mansfield Avenue, Sauchie, Alloa, succumbed in Clackmannan County Hospital on Saturday to injuries received in an accident at Brucefield Colliery, Clackmannan, on Wednesday. Drummond was working underground when three empty hutches broke away from the haulage rope and struck him, inflicting wounds to the head, bruises to the body, and severe internal injuries. Deceased leaves a widow and a family of six. [Scotsman 24 October 1938]

28 November 1939

Pit Fatality - Robert Mitchell (31), a miner, of Devonside, Tillicoultry, died in the Clackmannan County Hospital yesterday morning as a result of internal injuries sustained at the Devon Colliery the previous day. Mitchell was engaged on a section of the underground plant when some machinery fell on him. Workmen succeeded in freeing him after some difficulty. [Scotsman 29 November 1939]