Scottish Mining Website

1862 Deaths listed in Mine Inspectors Report
This table is compiled from appendices to the reports of the Inspector of Mines and Collieries - William Alexander for the Western District of Scotland and Ralph Moore for the Eastern District of Scotland. Additional details from the main body of the report are given where available. Many accidents are not listed in these reports and additional names have been added from newspaper reports and other sources - information not sourced from the mine inspectors reports is indicated by a shaded gray background
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Year MonthDayName of CollieryWhere situatedOwners namePerson(s) killedOccupationAge if givenCategory of AccidentCause of deathExtra Details
1862January4Little RaithLochgellyLochgelly Iron CoGeorge BissetCollier Falls of roofFall of coal from roofListed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
1862January14Cleland No 3 pitHolytownWilliam S DixonJames CranstonFireman Falls of roofFall of roof while engaged gearing it Listed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages. Date given by mine inspector is wrong - should be 8 January 1862. Newspaper report - Bothwell pages
James KellyBrusher 
Thomas FergusonBrusher 
1862January16BrownhillDalryE J WalshThomas FergusonDrawer15Falls of coal and roofFall of coal 
1862January18BraidenhillAirdrieJames PrenticeAlexander AdamsCollier In shaftsBy a prop or piece of pit wood falling down the shaftListed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
1862January20AuchinheathLesmahagowJames Ferguson & CoJames ThomsonSinker In shaftsKilled by a stone falling upon him from side of shaft Newspaper Report [NB John Thomson actually died 18 January 1862] Listed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
1862January20Towerlands No 8IrvineJohn H WattEdward BoyleBrusher43Falls of coal and roofFall of coalListed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
1862 January28CarlukeLanarkshire   Robert Aitken      Not listedDeath not listed in Inspectors report Newspaper Report Listed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
1862January31GreenbankDalryMerry & CunninghamAlexander TrainerMiner30Ironstone mines – in shaftsBy the cage being drawn over the pit head pulleys

From Main body of report: The winding machinery and fittings generally at this ironstone working are of modern construction and in good working order.

The accident was occasioned by the engineman, David Scoular, winding the cage in which the deceased was seated beyond the usual landing at the pit mouth, and taking it over the pit-head pulley.
It did not appear that any of the parts of the machinery had failed on this occasion or that anything unusual had happened to distract the attention of the engineman. He was charged by the Procurator Fiscal with culpable neglect of duty ; the case was brought before the sheriff substitute of Kilmarnock ; Scoular pled guilty, and after being suitably admonished he was sentenced to 10 days imprisonment.
Newspaper Report Listed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
1862February1CowdenhillMaryhillWilliam NapierGeorge McLuskieCollier33Falls of coal and roofFall of roof in a drawing roadListed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
1862February3GarscubeMaryhillJames BarclayJohn BrownPitheadman25In shaftsWas drawn into the shaft by the winding-rope when it broke 
1862February5GreenfieldShettlestonG B McNair & CoJames YoungCollier28Falls of coal and roofFall of roof in his working place Newspaper Report - Lanarkshire pages Listed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
1862February6EllismuirBailliestonJohn Watson senJerret RenwickDrawer18Falls of coal and roofFall of roof 
1862February6Govan No 2GlasgowW Dixon & CoWilliam Campbellroadsman50MiscellaneousBy going with an unprotected light into the powder magazine and igniting a large quantity of gunpowder

From Main body of report: In collieries such as this, where the long-wall system of working is practised, it is the custom to build the walls, and make the necessary cuttings in the roadways during the night. In the present case there was a cabin situated about 40 fathoms from the pit bottom, where the powder for supplying the night workmen was stored, and a person named Mackie was deputed to give it out. It appears that one of the workmen, Newton, had shortly before the accident applied for powder, Mackie had been engaged at the time and did not leave at once to go to the powder cabin, when a few minutes after, a severe explosion took place. The fittings and a considerable extent of brickwork in the neighbourhood of the shaft were destroyed; and the unfortunate sufferers, Newton and a neighbour workman, were found to have received fatal injuries from the severity of the explosion and the blast.

There can be no doubt that the deceased Newton, after calling upon Mackie, had gone to the cabin with the view of supplying himself, and in doing so had in some injudicious way allowed the flame of his lamp to get too near to the powder, or otherwise, and occasioned the accident.
When a quantity of powder is kept, under such circumstances, the place ought to be carefully secured, so as to prevent incautious persons from having access to it.
Newspaper Report - Lanarkshire pages Listed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
William Newtonroadsman27
1862February6Stonelaw No 1RutherglenJ R ReidRobert RichardsonCollier21Falls of coal and roofFall of roof Newspaper report Listed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
1862February8BathvaleBathgateJohn WatsonJames SmithMiner In shaftsCaught by cage at pit bottomListed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages Newspaper report
1862February8ShirvaKirkintillochWalter WingateJohn ConnorCollier19Falls of coal and roofFall of roofListed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
1862February11GlenloganCumnockPortland Iron CoJames AlcornCollier46Falls of coal and roofFall of roofListed in AMcD letter - see foot of pages
1862February15Elgin Colliery    Robert Thomson      Not listedDeath not listed in Inspectors report Newspaper report 
1862 February 23 Croftfoot Limestone pit     Unknown Cowie     Not listed Death not listed in Inspectors report Newspaper report - Old Monkland pages
1862February27NetherfieldGlasgowJ & J RobertsonJames BusbyCollier50Falls of coal and roofFall of roofLanarkshire accidents
1862March4Espieside No 3CoatbridgeW Baird & CoThomas DavidsonCollier26Falls of coal and roofFall of coalNewspaper Report
1862March4QuarterHamiltonColin Dunlop & CoWilliam SmallDrawer Ironstone mines – falls of roofFall of roof at face 
1862March5Lesmahagow      William Louden      Not listedDeath not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper Report
1862March5Carluke      Edward Russell      Not listedDeath not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper Report
1862March6Overtown      William Davie      see entry under May 6 belowDeath not listed in Inspectors report? 
1862March7TillicoultryTillicoultryJames SnowdowneWilliam AllanCollier Falls of roofFall of roof while redding Newspaper Report
[NB Accident was actually March 11 1862]
John CookCollier 
1862March10TillicoultryTillicoultryJames SnowdowneJohn PatersonCollier Falls of roofFall of roof  
1862March13Little RaithLochgellyLochgelly Iron CoDan. McGuireCollier Falls of roofFall of coal from roof 
1862March17CalderCoatbridgeW Dixon & CoAdam HunterOversman43In shaftsBy a wire rope breaking at an old and abandoned pit while they were being suspended in the shaft

From Main body of report:
The machinery at this colliery, when in operation, was arranged to pump water and wind materials. It had been standing for upwards of a year; but in consequence of a partial breakage of machinery at a neighbouring colliery, the pumping engine was started to assist with the drainage, till the necessary repairs could be made. It had been worked for five or six days, and no person had occasion to be lowered or raised in the shaft by the winding rope during that time. It was discovered on the morning of the accident that the "plunger" in connexion with the "forcing set'' of pumps required packing ; and I understand that after lowering and raising the cage with a weight upon it, so as to prove the state of the guides, &c., the oversman and an assistant were lowered.

The accident took place when they were being raised, after having completed their work, and when the cage was within a few feet of the surface, by the winding rope suddenly breaking.

Winding ropes out of use and exposed at a pit for a length of time, particularly when constructed of wire, ought to be carefully tested and examined before being used. The rope in question had been employed on the occasion for expediency, although it must have been apparent that it was not a perfect winding rope; and it forms a striking illustration of the insecurity of winding materials after they have lain for a time out of use or been otherwise neglected, independent of their character at the period of their abandonment or the amount of work that may have been done by them.
Newspaper report - Old Monkland pages
John MeiklamAssist. Oversman31
1862March18BalquhatsoneSlammananJohn Watson junWilliam MeekCollier Falls of roofFall of roof 
1862March18RoadingheadCumnockW Baird & CoHugh ParkMiner30Ironstone mines – falls of ironstone and roofFall of roof 
1862 March19Carluke      John Gilfillan      Not listedDeath not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper Report
1862March20ReddingFalkirkRedding Colliery CoAlex ScobieCollier Falls of roofFall of roof at face 
1862March26BankheadGalstonPortland Iron CoGeorge GoldieCollier42Falls of coal and roofFall of coal and roof at his working face 
1862March27GrangemouthFalkirkGrangemouth Coal CoThomas RaeBrusher Falls of roofFall of brushing 
1862April4RiskendKilsythW Baird & CoRobert ReynoldsSinker35Ironstone mines – in shaftsFell off the kettle in a sinking pit about 15 fathoms from the bottom 
1862April8JervistonHolytownWilsons & CoPhilip DochertyCollier Falls of roofFall of roofNewspaper report - Bothwell pages
[Date is actually 7 April]
1862April10DrumbathieAirdrieWilliam Baird & CoAlex. RussellMiner Ironstone mines – falls of roofFall of roof at face 
1862 April 10 Woodhead Clackmannan   Wm. Adamson     Not listed Death not listed in Inspectors report Newspaper report - Clackmannan pages
1862April17Portland No 2HurlfordPortland Iron CoThomas TrainerCollier50MiscellaneousThe powder accidentally ignited while preparing to blast

From Main body of report: The deceased and other workmen were engaged driving a mine through a "whingaw," and I understand that they were preparing to blast at the time the accident took place. As explained by one of the survivors, the deceased was in the act of "stemming"* or "ramming " a shot, when, from some cause, the powder ignited unexpectedly, and a serious explosion took place.

This casualty may be accounted for in two ways; first, by supposing that the " needle" was struck by mistake ; or that a train of loose gunpowder had been left lying along the side of the hole, and was ignited by a spark from the face of the "stemmer." The latter is the most likely way.
Accidents of this description, resulting from the unexpected ignition of gunpowder, have been less frequent of late ; they are often occasioned by attempting to drill out shots which have missed fire, with the view of saving the time required to form another hole. The practice is very unsafe, particularly if the tools used are composed of steel or iron. The proper and safe course however, when a shot misses fire, is to abandon it, and commence another bore hole at a safe distance.
Tools used for blasting purposes, such as "needles" and "stemmers" should either be formed of copper or faced with it; and if such tools had been employed in the case above referred to, this unfortunate occurrence would have been prevented.
 
1862April28Craigie HouseAyrRobert BrownJohn Andersonroadsman52Falls of coal and roofFall of roof 
1862May5BradleyDalryMerry & CunninghamJames McPakeMiner19Ironstone mines – miscellaneousWas struck by the cage on the head while looking down the pit

From Main body of report: At ironstone pits the scaffold, where the material is taken off the cage to be binged, is generally from 12 to 20 feet above the level of the surface or pit mouth ; consequently, the cage on which the hutch containing the material is raised is landed at this scaffold. It is the custom, however, when men are about to he lowered into the mine to rest the cage at the level of the pit mouth so as to save them the trouble of going up on to the level of the scaffold to get at it; and in the same way, when the cage with workmen is raised, it is stopped at the level of the pit mouth so as to enable them to get readily off.

I understand that the deceased was, on the evening of the accident, sitting at the pit-mouth, and waiting to he allowed to go to his work ; he had been looking over the side of the shaft, unseen by the engineman, and forgetful of the cage at the scaffold, which, on being lowered, struck him on the back of the head, and caused instant death.
 
1862May6OvertownWishawJohn WilsonWilliam DavisCollier In shaftsFall of coal while driving out a prop[A William Davie, age 42, was killed in Wilson's Pit, Overtown by a fall of coals on March 6 1862 - see Newspaper report - Cambusnethan pages]
1862May8BankNew CumnockBank Coal CoWilliam Samsonengineman33MiscellaneousIt is supposed that death was occasioned by getting entangled with the machinery

From Main body of report: The machinery employed on this occasion was of the usual description, and consisted of pumping and winding engines.

The deceased was night engineman, and his duty was to keep the pumping engine at work during the night. It was understood that the engine had been in operation on the morning of the accident, till about half-past three or four o'clock, the time it is supposed to have happened ; and judging from the position in which the body of the deceased was found by the workmen when they came to the colliery in the morning, I have no doubt that he had been in the act of oiling the shafting, when he was accidentally caught by the revolving machinery, or had missed his footing and got entangled with it.
The fatal accidents of this description generally happen to the workmen who are in direct charge of the machinery, and in many cases from the absurd practice of cleaning and oiling dangerous parts of it while in motion.
 
1862May8SwineridgemuirDalryMerry & CunninghamHugh CogansBoy13Falls of coal and roofFall of roof at the face  
1862May9BogheadBathgateJames Russell & CoGeorge GrayMiner MiscellaneousSuffocated by choke damp

From Main body of report:
The accident occurred in an exploring mine at Boghead Colliery. The mine had been stopped for a day or two, and the deceased who was one of the contractors, went in for his graith. He knew the place was full of choke-damp, for his light would not burn, so he groped his way to the face in the dark; before he got to the face he fell and his body was not recovered .for some hours afterwards. The ventilation of the pit was very bad. Air was carried into this mine by means of wooden boxes 15 inches wide and 7 inches deep, but the current was scarcely perceptible. At best, the quantity which could be made to pass through these boxes was insufficient. There was no excuse for this state of matters, although the man himself was to blame for his death.
 
1862May9NewbattleDalkeithMarquis of LothianHenry MartinCollier In shaftsFell into sump at pit bottom

From Main body of report:
The engineman while lowering the men in the mornings brought away the opposite cage without receiving a signal from the pit-bottom. A lame boy, who had not time to get off, appears to have attempted to jump, and in doing so had fallen back into the sump where he was found dead. A bottomer is now stationed, in terms of the special rules, to bell every time before the cage ascends.
 
1862May10Hill of BeathLochgellyOrde AdamsGav. HamiltonSinker In shaftsChain broke while lowering pipes and knocked him off buntons

From Main body of report:
Some sinkers were lowering 30 fathoms of 12-inch pipes by means of chains. One half were under water and they were descending close to another sett of the same size. The flanges appear to have rested, and going off with ajerk snapped the chains, and the deceased who was standing on a bunton guiding them was carried away by the falling mass. The chain was quite equal to the weight under ordinary circumstances but not for jerks. A steam crab and strong galvinized wire rope is now substituted.
Newspaper report - Beath accidents
1862 May 12 NK Nackerton area Bothwell   John Bell coal miner   Hurt sustained in coal pit Death not listed in Inspectors report With thanks to Colin Whitehead for this information
1862May13DysartKirkcaldyLord RosslynWm FairfulCollier Falls of roofFall of head coal Newspaper report - Fife pages
A DuncanCollier 
1862May13MerrytonHamiltonCochrane & BrandRobert BartonFireman ExplosionsExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report:
Accident occurred at Merryton colliery, in the Ell coal, which is six feet thick, and worked by stoop and room, at a depth of 71 fathoms.

On a Monday morning the fireman went down the pit to make his usual examination before the colliers entered. He had a naked lamp on his head, and carried his Davy lamp in his hand. He was seen passing into the workings in this way by two roadsmen who were working at the pit bottom, and who were the only other men in the pit. About 10 minutes after he left them an explosion took place, which knocked both of them down. One of them was so much injured that he died in consequence. The body of the fireman was found eight days afterwards, within a short distance from the face, and in the air course ; his Davy lamp was found broken by his side, but his cap and naked lamp were never found. The locality of the firedamp, and direction of the blast, were shown pretty clearly. There had not been much firedamp, but every stopping in the pit was knocked out or injured.

The furnace had not been regularly fired during the Sunday, and most probably gas had accumulated in those places where the fireman usually went with his naked lamp, and the explosion was the consequence.

When the ventilation was restored to its ordinary state I found it amounted to 14,720 cubic feet per minute, whereof 9,000 cubic feet were sent into the north level where the explosions occurred; but so badly was the air conducted, with the wooden stoppings, that only 3,000 cubic feet remained when it reached that point. I made the following suggestions to the owners:-
(1.) That the fireman leave his naked lamp on the pit head when he makes his rounds in the morning, and take only a Davy lamp. He might take two Davy lamps in case one was to go out.
(2.) The rarifying furnace should be kept on night and day. If the steam jet can be made to act as effectively, it is more desirable in point of safety.
(3.) The air courses should be 36 feet area, and never less.
(4.) The main currents of air ought to be guarded by brick and lime stoppings, 9 inches thick, and where stoppings are intended to be permanent the places should not exceed eight feet in width.
(5.) A range of brick stoppings should be carried from the level to the rise at least every 150 yards.
(6.) Wooden stoppings should be avoided in permanent air courses, and whenever adopted should be most scrupulously and constantly examined.

I made the remark as to the steam jet, in consequence of its application at Skellyton, Allanton, and Summerlee collieries, which are in the immediate neighbourhood, where it is held to be as economical as the furnace, and there can be no doubt of its greater safety.
Newspaper report - Hamilton pages [Date was 12 May 1862]
George McLeanroadsman 
1862May20Cumnock No 1CumnockPortland Iron CoSamuel McGinnesCollier45Falls of coal and roofFall of roof at the face 
1862May20Mossend Iron WorksHolytownMossend Iron CoJames HarknessCollier Falls of roofKilled by fall of stone while redding a road 
John MillarCollier 
1862May22Overton CollieryWishawJohn WilsonHenry McLuskieCollier Falls of roofFall of main coalNewspaper report - Cambusnethan pages
1862May27SunnysideWishawArchd. RussellWm SimpsonCollier ExplosionsExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report: The accident occurred at Clydesdale pit, Sunnyside Colliery. A fall had taken place in a stone mine, and gas accumulated in the cavity. The fireman of the pit along with two other men were redding the fall. He was standing on the top of the gears, stowing rubbish, and the gas lit at his lamp and burnt them all; one of his companions died. There was a good current of air passing into the mine as far as the fall. I suggested that locked Davy lamps only, be used until the gas completely expelled.
Newspaper report - Cambusnethan pages
1862May27Drumpeller Colliery      James Hastings          Death not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper report - Old Monkland pages
1862June9BroomhillDennyW Baird & CoWilliam StewartCollier30Falls of coal and roofFall of roof at the face 
1862June9Little RaithLochgellyLochgelly Iron CoJno CampbellCollier Falls of roofFall of head coal Newspaper report - Beath pages
1862June10Cadder No 8BishopbriggsCarron Iron CoWilliam WotherspoonMiner32Ironstone mines – falls of ironstone and roofFall of roof at the face 
1862June10Rosehall No 11CoatbridgeAddie & MillerGib. McKayPony driver16Ironstone mines – miscellaneousFell before a train of loaded hutches when part of it was drawn over himNewspaper report - Old Monkland pages
1862June12SunnysideWishawArchd. RussellJohn DunnCollier Falls of roofFall of roof in stone mine 
1862June16Bredisholm No 1BailliestonJohn YoungJames SmithCollier45Falls of coal and roofFall of roof at the face Newspaper report - Old Monkland pages
1862June18KennetAlloaThomas GreerJohn MitchelCollier Ironstone mines – falls of roofFall of ironstone[NB John Condie Paterson age 18 is listed as being killed by a fall on 18th June 1862 in Kennet No 2 Pit - the name given here may be a mistake in the inspectors list - see Newspaper Report]
1862 June18Old Bridge Pit, Hurlford      William Jamieson      Not listedDeath not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper Report
1862June19KirkwoodCoatbridgeJohn HendrieAlexander NeilsonBottomer59In shaftsGot caught by the cage when it was being lifted

From Main body of report: According to the special rules of this colliery it is the practice for the drawers to place the loaded hutches on the cage, and secure them there, under the supervision and direction of the bottomer, preparatory to being sent up the pit.

The deceased was bottomer at the colliery, and it appears that on the day of the accident a young lad had gone with a loaded hutch to the pit bottom in the usual way, for the purpose of placing it on the cage. He had failed to run it exactly on to its place, and the bottomer, who was stationed at the opposite side, went on to the cage for the purpose of assisting him, when the engine was suddenly set in motion, apparently without a signal from the pit bottom, and he was instantly crushed between the cage and the side of the shaft.
Workmen employed underground, particularly bottomers, are frequently exposed about the bottom of the shaft ; they trust implicitly to the shaft regulations being carried out ; it is therefore of the greatest consequence that an engineman should be thoroughly impressed with the importance of his duty, and of the great responsibility attached to the proper performance of it.
In this case the Procurator Fiscal charged the engineman with culpable homicide ; the case was called before Lord Deas and a jury at the. Glasgow Circuit Court in September last ; but after a few witnesses had been examined for the prosecution, some doubts were entertained as to whether a signal had not been made, and the charge was departed from.
Newspaper report - Old Monkland pages
1862June21WestmuirGlasgowRobert Gray & CoCharles O'DonnelBrusher40Falls of coal and roofFall of roof at the face 
1862June26Blair No 6DalryW Baird & CoJames CurdieMiner20Ironstone mines – in shaftsFell from the cage while ascending the shaft 
1862June26TigethaughDennyW Baird & CoPeter McKennaFireman30Ironstone mines – explosionsExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report: There are two seams of ironstone at present being worked in this pit. The accident took place in the upper one, and at the time when the night shift-men were about to proceed to their work.

It was the duty of the fireman to examine the state of the work before the workmen were allowed to enter; and it appears that he had taken a safety lamp on the night of the accident, and gone in to the workings apparently for the purpose of carrying out this very important rule. No one of course knew the extent of his examination, but when he returned to the pit bottom he informed the workmen that the places were " all clear" and in a workable state, when a few minutes after, as he and one of the miners were passing in to a working place, a quantity of fire-damp was exploded.
The injuries received by the fireman proved fatal. Judging from the short time intervening between the examination and the explosion, only a few minutes, I think there can be no doubt that the sufferer in this case had failed to make a proper inspection of the whole of the working parts.
 
1862July12Clydesdale Pit Wishaw      John Dunn      Not listed in Inspectors reportDeath not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper report - Cambusnethan pages
1862July15Hillhead No 4KilmarnockJohn Gilmour & CoThomas HattrickDrawer17Falls of coal and roofFall of roof at the face 
1862July15Rosehall No 5CoatbridgeAddie & MillerRobert McAlpineOversman25Ironstone mines – in shaftsBy attempting to step off the cage while in motion

From Main body of report:
Occasioned by the oversman attempting to step off the cage while it was in motion.

This shaft is of the form peculiar to the Scotch coal field, and is divided with boarding to suit the requirements of the mine. The winding machinery and shaft fittings are of the usual construction.

The deceased at the time of the accident was engaged with an oversman, who had charge of another district of the mine, making an examination of the " rise" division of the shaft with the view of clearing away some loose or insecure material from the side of it.

It would appear that they had just completed their examination, that is, the cage had been lowered with them slowly from the surface to the pit bottom, and without going off the cage, they had made the visual ascent signals to be raised again, but just as the signals were made, and the cage was about to be raised, some loose stuff fell on to the cover of the cage, and it is supposed that the deceased had got alarmed at it, and in attempting to get off, he got entangled with the cage, and was crushed between it and the side of the shaft.

The bottomer, who was near to the signalling apparatus, gave the back signal to the engineman without delay, but unfortunately it was too late to prevent the accident.
Newspaper report - Old Monkland pages
1862July18ArbuckleAirdrieWilliam BlackJames LaidlawCollier Falls of roofFall of stone at face 
1862July18StevensonStevensonMerry & CunninghamPatrick LennanBorer58ExplosionsExplosion of fire damp at a bore hole

From Main body of report: This accident took place at a borehole which the deceased and other workmen were in the act of putting down from the "waste" of the "five-quarter" coal to prove the position and quality of the seams underlying. The depth of the bore from the pavement of this seam was about 11 fathoms.

It would appear that, on the day of the accident, and a short time before it took place, a "cutter" or open rent in the strata, had been intersected by the bore, and a quantity of firedamp, evidently existing under considerable pressure, forced itself up through the bore-hole and the water which was in it, and lodged in a high part of the roof immediately adjoining.
During this extra discharge the ventilation at that place was found insufficient, and though the borers had retired when the gas first made its appearance, they had afterwards returned, or ventured nearer to it, when it is supposed that the firedamp had ignited at an unprotected light, either belonging to one of the borers, or to the breaksman employed at a short distance to the " dip" of the borehole.
 
Peter WoodAssist. Borer26
1862July19CoathillCoatbridgeMerry & CunninghamDennis SweenieDrawer25Ironstone mines – in shaftsCrossing the cage after a signal had been made to raise it 
1862 July 21 Croftfoots Limestone Pit Coatbridge   John Ferrie       Death not listed in Inspectors report Newspaper report - Old Monkland pages
Thomas Lockhart    
1862July23MurdostounWishawRobert StewartWm Edgarengineman In shaftsSlipped off a bunton and fell down the pit while changing a bucket

From Main body of report:
This was purely accidental
 
1862July23Turf DykeStevensonMerry & CunninghamJames RaesideCollier34Falls of coal and roofFall of roof while engaged securing it 
1862July24LegbrannockAirdrieMonkland Iron CoJames GallowayContractor Ironstone mines – in shaftsFell off scaffold in sinking pit 
1862July31Overcroy No 1KilsythW Baird & CoWilliam HunterSinker30Ironstone mines – in shaftsWhile being raised on a cistern it was drawn against a beam at the pit mouth which snapped the bearing bolts, and the cistern fell to the bottom

From Main body of report: The deceased were engaged on the day of the accident removing a small cistern, which had been employed as a temporary lodgement in the shaft, for the purpose of enabling them to extend the column of pumps to the bottom.

A pair of slings were connected to the end of the winding rope fitted with bolts and cotters for attaching to the cistern. After making the connexion, it appears that the cistern in being drawn up the shaft, caught against a beam at the pit mouth ; the bolts broke suddenly, and the deceased, with the cistern, were precipitated to the bottom.
It did not appear to me that the connexion in this case had been arranged in a very judicious way, and a different application of the same materials might have been more effective. Nevertheless, if the unlooked for occurrence of the cistern getting entangled in the crossbeam at the pit mouth had not happened I believe the connexion would have been quite sufficient for the occasion.
Newspaper Report - Dunbartonshire accidents NB Date actually 26 July
Matthew McKinnonSinker30
1862August2OvertownWishawWaddel & LowdenWilliam LyleCollier Falls of roofFall of coal in Ell coal seamNewspaper report - Cambusnethan pages
1862August4CowdenbeathLochgellyForth Iron CoGeorge RoneyCollier Falls of roofFall of head coal Newspaper report - Beath pages
1862August7RochsollochAirdrieWilliam CowanPat SweenyCollier Falls of roofFall of coal in Kiltongue seam 
1862August8Minivie No 3DalmellingtonDalmellington Iron CoDaniel McInaltyroadsman40In shaftsWas struck by a stone in the shaft whilst standing on the top of the cover of the cage

From Main body of report: In this case the sufferer was a roadsman, who at the time of the accident was engaged taking bratticing wood down the shaft. The cage by which he was being lowered was fitted with a good substantial cover; of course the wood could not be placed under the cover, but there would have been no difficulty in placing it so as to rest upon the cage, leaving ample room for standage to those who required to go along with it, if necessary.

The accident took place while the deceased was standing upon the cover of the cage at the pit bottom, by a fall of stone supposed from the side of the shaft.
The strata through which this shaft is sunk is comparatively soft. I directed attention to the 6th general rule, which provides that " Every working and pumping pit or shaft where the natural strata, under ordinary circumstances, are not safe, shall be securely cased or lined or otherwise made secure."
Independent of the secure state of a shaft or otherwise, I think a covered cage is indispensable as a means of protection to persons while being lowered or raised. I invariably advise that at least one covered cage shall be used at every working or winding pit; and that where only one is covered the workmen shall be restricted to ride upon it.
The arrangement of working with only one of the cages covered is suggested in consequence of the inconvenience of taking down long lengths of wood upon a cage with a cover on it.
 
1862August11KenmuirhillTollcrossJohn HorneGeorge WyperCollier30Falls of coal and roofFall of roof at face 
1862August14MilnwoodHolytownJohn ChristieMic. ClarkeFireman ExplosionsExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report: The accident occurred at Milnwood colliery, under nearly similar circumstances with the first [May 13 1862, Merryton].

The pit had been standing for two days for the purpose of making repairs on the machinery and the furnace had not been kept on. The two firemen of the pit were lowered down by an auxiliary engine to kindle the furnace and examine the workings. One of them had a Davy lamp and the other a naked light. A small quantity of firedamp which had accumulated in a road in consequence of the suspension of the furnace, kindled at the naked light and burned them both ; one of them died. The accident was caused by their own negligence.
 
1862August23Drumpeller No 1CoatbridgeJohn Wilson's TrusteesJohn GaryCollier18Falls of coal and roofFall of coal 
1862August27Springfield No 2BishopbriggsW Dixon & CoRobert DavidsonMiner27Ironstone mines – miscellaneousBy the cage descending upon him while unnecessarily exposing himself in the bottom of the shaft

From Main body of report:
In this case the sufferer was employed as a drawer to run the empty hutches from the pit bottom into a "horse lye." and to push back the full ones. He had, on the day of the accident, contrary to all practice, and without cause, gone in to the bottom of the shaft while a return cage was in the act of being lowered to it, and remained there, after having been warned of his danger by the bottomer, till the descending cage was partly lowered upon him. His leg, which was caught between the cage and the plates at the cage seat, was badly bruised, and from that and other injuries, he died in a few days after.
 
1862August28Wellwood No 1MuirkirkW Baird & CoJames StevensonCollier16Falls of coal and roofFall of coal

From Main body of report: This accident forms a striking illustration of the hazardous nature of a miner's employment, and shows how, from various and unforeseen causes, his life is daily imperilled.

The deceased was a young man, and at the time of the accident it would appear that he was engaged at the face of the coal, undermining and preparing to take it down, when it is supposed that a portion of the coal which was being undermined, in falling, came in contact with the point of his pick in such a way as to cause it to enter the back of his ear, and produced injuries which in a few minutes after proved fatal.
 
1862September1PatherWishawBoyd & SpencerJames YoungDrawer ExplosionsExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report:
The accident occurred at Pather colliery. The workings were five feet high, and were worked by stoop and room; stoops 12 yards square, rooms 13 feet wide.

Firedamp occasionally gathered in the rooms, but instead of carrying up a brattice and sending a current of air into the place to dispel the firedamp, it was "waffed out" with a fan by the fireman every morning.

When the rooms were driven up 12 yards they were stopped and fenced off until an end was driven over. So imperfectly was this done that a putter stumbled by mistake into a standing room one day and exploded the firedamp in it. He died in consequence of the injuries he received.

When I examined the colliery three days afterwards I found this room up 31 feet, and 21 feet of it was filled with firedamp.
 
1862September9JervistonHolytownSummerlee Iron CoA CoffieCollier Falls of roofFall of stone in Pyotshaw coal 
1862September12Gartshore No 3KilsythWilliam Baird & CoWm AbercrombieSinker29Ironstone mines – in shaftsFell off the kettle while ascending the shaft 
1862September12Hurlford CollieryHurlfordJohn HowieHugh ThompsonCollier36Falls of coal and roofFall of coal 
1862September24Cadder No 2BishopbriggsCarron Iron CoWilliam JollieMiner60Ironstone mines – falls of ironstone and roofFall of roof while engaged securing it

From Main body of report: The deceased were miners, and at the time of the accident they were engaged forming a level mine, cross cutting to the rise, from the main seam of ironstone to one which underlay it about 5 fathoms.

They had extended it only a short distance, but not far enough to admit of the natural strata being left on as a roof.
The accident was occasioned by a mass of the roof near to the face, partially supported, falling unexpectedly.
 
William HunterMiner45
1862September24Warrickhill No 3KilmarnockMerry & CunninghamWilliam VernonBoy12Falls of coal and roofFall of roof at the face 
1862September24Whifflat No 14CoatbridgeTrustees of the late J WilsonJohn McCourtWindlassman36Ironstone mines – miscellaneousStruck by the handle of the windlass while lowering a hutch 
1862September26MilnwoodHolytownJohn ChristieJohn ShieldsSinker In shaftsFell out of kettle while ascending pit

From Main body of report:
At Milnwood a sinker was ascending by a windlass ; the hook by which the bucket was attached to the rope was of the simplest kind. The bow of the bucket was intended to be secured by a cutter passing through the hook above it, but this had been neglected ; the bucket slipped off, and the man fell to the bottom. Recommended spring hooks to be used, which has been done.
 
1862September30CapeldraeKirkcaldyRobert AytounJames CrombieContractor Falls of roofFall of stoneNewspaper report
1862October4WestmuirGlasgowRobert Gray & CoMichael McLachlanBrusher33Falls of coal and roofFall of roof while blasting 
1862 October 5 Bogleshole     John Connor       Death not listed in Inspectors report Newspaper Report - Lanarkshire pages
1862 October 6 Lingerwood     Thomas Martin       Death not listed in Inspectors report Newspaper report - Lothian pages
1862October10Bartonholm No 2KilwinningW Baird & CoRobert ThomsonCollier26Falls of coal and roofFall of roof 
1862October11GovanGlasgowW Dixon & CoThomas Robertsonroadsman39ExplosionsExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report: This accident happened in the lower or splint coal seam of the colliery, and was occasioned by one of the miners taking his unprotected light in contact with a small quantity of firedamp which had collected in a high part of the roof of his roadway.

The explosion, though of trifling extent, had the effect of displacing a trap door; which, coming violently in contact with one of the roadsmen, who was sitting near to it at the time, caused his death.
It was supposed, though not proved, that a main trap door, leading into a certain part of the district, had been left open for a short time by one of the drawers, which had the effect of diverting the ventilation from the roadway in question, and causing a partial stagnation.
Newspaper Report - Lanarkshire pages
1862October19Abercorn No 2PaisleyMerry & CunninghamMurty BableDrawer27Ironstone mines – miscellaneousBy being run over by a full hutch on a drawing road 
1862October21KennetAlloaThomas GreerJohn PatersonCollier Falls of roofFall of stoneNB No death certificate for a John Paterson can be found to fit this accident. A Malcolm Mitchell, age 11 did die in Kennet on 21 October 1862. Clackmannan pages
1862November16MorningsideWishawShotts Iron CoRobert CarsonPumper In shaftsCrushed by cage while ascending pit

From Main body of report:
At Morningside the pit-head man was absent on a Fast day, and no proper signal was made from the pit-head to the pit-bottom, when a man engaged pumping water was about to ascend. Some misunderstanding took place, and the man was carried up before being properly stationed on the cage, and he was crushed at the door-heads. A cord is now carried into the engine-house, so that the engineman can make the signal.
 
1862November26Bleeze No 1DalryMerry & CunninghamCharles RobertsonAssistant pitheadsman53Ironstone mines – above groundFell off the platform at the pithead when running out a hutch

From Main body of report: This accident happened to an assistant pit headman, who had been accustomed for a number of years to work as such at ironstone pits.

On the day of the accident he was in the act of pushing a loaded hutch from the pitmouth along the scaffold leading to the ironstone bing when from some cause he missed his footing, and fell from the scaffold to the ground, a distance of 19 feet or thereby.
The erections at this pit are similar to those in general use throughout the district.
I suggested to the general manager, with the view of, in future, preventing a similar occurrence, that a light railing, at a proper height, should be placed along the sides of high platforms leading out to ironstone or rubbish bings ; this he agreed to do, and I think it is such an arrangement as should be carried out at all ironstone pits.
 
1862November26Meadowfield      James Black         Death not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper report
1862November29Springfield No 4BishopbriggsW Dickson & CoRobert DourisMiner20Ironstone mines – in shaftsCaught between the cage and the struts when being raisedNewspaper Report - Dunbartonshire accidents
1862November29WellwoodDunfermlineThos. Spowart & CoJ RusselCollier Falls of roofFall of coal Newspaper report - Fife pages
1862December10BantaskineFalkirkJohn WilsonDd. DavidsonCollier Falls of roofFall of stone at face 
1862December10MylesTranentSir George Suttie, BartEdward FordLabourer In shaftsFell out of kettle while ascending pit

From Main body of report:
A sinker came in contact with a bunton while ascending a sinking pit and fell to the bottom. The buntons were afterwards clad with sliding deals and a similar accident could not happen.
 
1862December18BalgreggieLochgellyCrombie & AndersonJ StevensonCollier Falls of roofFall of coal Newspaper report - Fife pages
1862December19PriestriggAirdrieDundas SimpsonWm GrayPitheadman In shaftsBlown into pit by gust of wind

From Main body of report:
Recommended sliding gates, which the owner has promised to put on
 
1862December20SunnysideWishawArchd. RussellJames MilloyLabourer In shaftsFell down pit from surface

From Main body of report: A labourer was sending up loaded hutches of dross onto a higher scaffold, by means of the cage. He ran forward a loaded hutch into the pit when there was no cage to receive it, fell down the pit and he followed it. There was some mistake about signals. A special signal is now placed in the engine-house for this service.
Newspaper report - Cambusnethan pages
1862December30BalgreggieLochgellyCrombie & AndersonDd AndersonCollier In shaftsJumped off cage at pit head and fell down pit

From Main body of report:
The engineman lifted the cage up instead of lowering it down ; a young lad who was on the cage descending took fright, leaped off, and fell back into the pit. There was a boat-gate and a stair-pit, and the engineman had orders not to allow the men to descend by the cage.
Newspaper report - Fife pages
1862December30CambusnethanWishawD & J SneddonCharles BoydCollier Falls of roofFall of Pyotshaw coalNewspaper report - Cambusnethan pages

 Accidents In Coal Mines - To the Editor of the Glasgow Herald, Sir,- As, at the present moment, the numerous casualties in mines, and more especially those which have recently occurred in England, are attracting the attention and exciting the sympathies of the humane and philanthropic both in England and Scotland, I deem this a fitting opportunity to direct the attention of the community officially to those which of late years have occurred in the coal mines is Scotland. I do this now because I have in view in a future communication to submit to the public a plan by which to mitigate the distress and suffering which results from so many fatal accidents as have taken place in this part of the country, as well as to provide in some measure for the relief of those who have from similar causes been rendered incapable of subsequently following their usual or even any other employment. Beginning with the year 1853, I find that the deaths from accidents in the coal mines of Scotland were as follows:- In 1853, 81; 1854, 53; 1865, 68; 1856, 92; 1857, 83; 1858, 76 j 1859, 92; 1860, 93; thus showing a total of 638 lives lost in these mines in the course of eight years, or an annual average of nearly 80 deaths. It is not assuming too much, I fear, to estimate the number of deaths in connection with the ironstone mines in Scotland at one-third of that number, which would raise the total deaths to 380 in the period of eight years. According to the computation of the late lamented Mr. Mackworth, inspector of mines, and also of Mr. Dickinson, the present inspector of mines for the Manchester district, the "serious injuries " to the person are at 3 to 1 of the deaths, which would give a total severely injured, of 2550 in eight years, or an average of nearly 320 a year disabled, perhaps for life. I have not bean able to include the results during 1861, because I am not yet in possession of the inspectors' reports for that year; but I think that from those I have been able to give, I have made out that such a vast amount of suffering has occurred as most clamantly to call on the humane and the benevolent to come forward and endeavour to do something to alleviate the misery which must inevitably have followed. But, still further to give an idea of the extent of misery end destitution which these casualties create among the widows and orphans of the sufferers, I have been enabled to frame a register of accidents for so much of this year (1862) as has already elapsed: - On the 4th January, George Bisset, a young man, was killed in the Little Raith pit, in Fifeshire; on the 8th there were killed in No. 3 Cleland Carfin pit, James Cranston, leaving a widow and four children, James Kelly, a widow and four children, Thomas Ferguson, a father and mother; on the 14th John Thomson was killed in the Auchinheath Sinking pit, leaving a widow and four children; on the 18th Alex. Adams was killed in the Gallowhill pit, near Airdrie, leaving a widow and three children; on the 23th, Robert Aitken was so much hurt in the Langshaw pit, Carluke, that he shortly after died, leaving a widow and three children; on the same day Edward Boyle was killed in the Towerlands pit, near Irvine, leaving a wife and six children; on the 28th Edward Lenny was killed by falling down No. 9 Carnbroe pit; on the 31st Alex. Train was killed in the Greenbank pit, Dalry, leaving a widow and three children; on 1st February, George M'Lusky was killed in the Cowdenhill pit, leaving a widow and four children; on the 4th, James Young was killed in the Garibaldi pit, Shettleston, leaving a widow and two children; on the 6th Robert Richardson was killed in the Old Stonelaw pit; on the 6th, Gerard Lennox, a youth of 18, was killed in the Ellismuir pit, Baillieston, leaving an aged father, who was entirely dependent on him; on the same day, Wm. Newton was killed in No. 2 Polmadie pit, leaving a widow and one child, and in the same pit, at the same time, William Campbell was killed, leaving a widow and four children: on the 8th, Wm. John Connon, a youth, was killed in the Shirva pit, near Kilsyth; on the same day, John Smith was killed in No. 3 Bathgate Vale pit, Armadale, leaving a widow and six children; and still on the same day, James Aldcorn was killed in No. 8 Glenlogan pit, near Lugar, leaving a widow and eight children! Thus in less than forty days of 1862 there have been no fewer than 19 persons killed, leaving 13 widows and 55 children and dependants! - in all, 68 deprived of their means of support. These, it will be observed, are included in those cases only which have been reported to me, and undoubtedly there must have been many other cases in districts with which I have not yet had communication. The number of cases of "severe injuries," by which many wives, children, and other dependants have been for a time, or permanently, deprived of the means of support, so far as reported, are 24 in number, of which 8 occurred from explosions, 3 from lifting of the " cage" without the requisite warning, 8 by over winding the cage, and the remainder by accidents at the working faces at on the travelling roads of the mines. Taking the dependants on these at an average of 3 each, founded on the average of the fatal cases, there has already this year been not fewer than 140 individuals left without the means of support; and taking the same average for the eight years above referred to, the gross number of those left permanently or temporarily destitute would reach the startling amount of 7650!
To these details which, collected hurriedly, are necessarily imperfect, I would most earnestly solicit the attention of the humane and charitable. The late fearful catastrophe at Hartley has aroused the national sympathy, and the appeal of the committee on behalf of the desolate widows and orphans has been nobly responded to throughout the country by placing at their disposal the magnificent sum of about £50,000. But are not the details I have been able to furnish sufficiently harrowing to inspire similar benevolence and empathy for the widows and orphans of the sufferers from similar calamities in the mines of Scotland? Although not so dismally large as at Hartley are the deprivations of the families, in Scotland, yet, so far as they go, the destitution and distress are equally severe, and ought to excite similar feelings of charity towards the sufferers. While I thus appeal to the public, I feel bound also to appeal to the miners themselves. Their families may soon be in the same position as those to which I have called attention, and they therefore ought to come forward liberally. Even their contributions will so far alleviate the present offerings of the bereaved, and aided, as I hope they will be,by a benevolent public, the aching heart of the widow may be soothed, the wailing cry of the famishing orphans for bread may be responded to, means may be secured to promote the physical, moral, and intellectual condition of the fatherless children, and so far, at least, as pecuniary aid can afford consolation, a degree of comfort may be again found in their now desolate dwellings. - I am, Sir, your obedient servant, Alex. M'Donald, Holytown,21st Feb, 1862. [Glasgow Herald 22 February 1862]
Last Updated 19th May 2012