Scottish Mining Website

1863 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
We welcome information on deaths not listed on this page - please complete a submission form

Year MonthDayName of CollieryWhere situatedOwners namePerson(s) killedOccupationAge if givenCategory of AccidentCause of deathExtra Details
1863January10Govan No 2 PitGlasgowW D DixonWilliam MannelBrusher36MiscellaneousExplosion of gunpowder 
1863January13No 3 ChapelhallAirdrieMonkland Iron CoJames TorranceBrusher20Falls of roofThe Virtue Well coal roof which he was brushing fell upon himNewspaper report
1863 January 13 No. 4, Dounieston     Adam Reid     Not listed Death not listed in Inspectors report Newspaper report - Ayrshire pages
1863January21ClackmannanClackmannanClackmannan Coal CoJohn AllanCollier33Falls of roofNeglected to prop up roof at face Newspaper report - Clackmannan pages
1863January22No 3 ClelandHolytownW S DixonJohn YuileContractor27Falls of roofA piece of Pyotshaw coal 20' by 15' by 3' fell upon him as he was taking out the props which kept it upNewspaper report - Cambusnethan pages
1863January29Chapel CollieryWishawWilliam AitkenJas McLeanCollier18Falls of roofFall of top coal at faceNewspaper report - Cambusnethan pages
1863January30OakleyDunfermlineForth Iron CoJohn McLayFireman--Ironstone mines – miscellaneousSuffocated by choke damp while going round workings 
1863January31East Drumoyne      John Crawford          Death not listed in Inspectors report  Newspaper report
1863February7George Pit, FordellDunfermlineG W M HendersonJoan MuirPit-head woman50In shaftsRan an empty tub into the pit and fell after it. Recommended sliding gatesNewspaper report - Fife pages
1863February10BalgrayhillLanarkshire   JohnMcCartney      Death not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper report
1863February11PatherWishawBoyd & SpencerThos StratonCollier--Falls of roofFall of stones from roof at faceNewspaper report - Cambusnethan pages
1863February12BredisholmBailliestonProvanhall Coal CoArchd YoungCollier31Falls of roofA piece of Pyotshaw coal 24' by 22' by 4 which he was preparing to take down fell upon him 
1863February12NitshillHurletG & T CoatesMichael DochertyCollier63Falls of coal and roofFall of coal 
1863February16Woodhill No 5KilmarnockMerry & CunninghamWilliam McHarqassistant pitheadman62In shaftsFell down the shaft when pushing a hutch in to the wrong side

From Main body of report: The pit was protected on one side by a moveable guard. The deceased was pit-headman, and in a state of absence unknowingly pushed an empty hutch into the wrong side of the shaft, and fell to the bottom with it.

If a simple guard had been placed upon the open side of the shaft, similar to what was placed upon the other, which would probably have cost 5s., this unfortunate occurrence would have been prevented.
1863February18EnterkineAyrJ T GordonHamilton McGillEngineman23Above groundBy getting entangled with the fly wheel when putting the winding machinery into gear

From Main body of report: The machinery at this pit is of the usual description, and it is fitted up so that it can be used either to pump water or to wind coals.

It would appear that on the night of the accident there was a shift of workmen employed in the pit. A signal had been made from below to put the winding machinery into gear. The deceased had gone direct to the gearing, which is outside of the engine-house, for the purpose of shifting the drum shaft into gear, and while in the act of doing so he had leaned upon one of the arms of the fly-wheel which set it in motion, and the steam not being shut off, the engine immediately got into action. In consequence of the sudden movement of the fly-wheel, the deceased must either have lost his balance, and fallen into the recess where the fly-wheel works in, or got entangled with the fly-wheel, and been dragged round with it.
A person who was in the engine-house at the time observed the accident, and very properly rushed to the handle of the engine and stopped it, but before this could be done the deceased was dragged right round the fly-wheel pit, a narrow contracted opening, and jammed between the fly-wheel and the side of the engine-house.
In this case there must have been some overlook on the part of the engine man, in not thoroughly shutting off the steam before leaving the engine ; but it is proper to observe that there had also been some overlook on the part of those intrusted with the management. According to the 14th general rule, it is provided that "the fly-wheel of every engine shall be securely fenced." And if such a fence had been constructed around the fly-wheel in question, in all probability this distressing occurrence would not have taken place.
1863February19Quarry Pit, CalderCoatbridgeW S DixonThomas WalkerPony driver15Ironstone mines – in shaftsFell out of the cage, apparently when attempting to step off it, at a mid-working

From Main body of report: There was some mystery about how this accident happened. The deceased, who was a pony driver, was descending to his work on the morning of the accident, in company with another lad, Scobbie, also engaged driving a pony underground.

They had got properly on to the cage at the pitmouth, and were being lowered in the usual way, but when passing a "mid working" it is supposed that the deceased had either stumbled or mistaken it for the bottom, and in attempting to step off the cage fell past it and to the bottom of the shaft.
What was most singular, Scobbie, the boy who accompanied the deceased, never saw him after leaving the surface, although they were both observed passing a mid working, and did not discover that an accident had taken place till the cage was lowered upon his companion at the pit bottom.
1863February21BarbauchlawBathgateMonkland Steel CoRobert LivingstoneMiner--Ironstone mines – in shaftsA hutch fell out of an upper seam upon him while he was ascending the pit. Gates put on 
1863February24ShawsHamiltonRobt G CooperAndw. BrownOversman--Falls of roofFall of roof at face while he was examining it Newspaper report - Dalserf pages (actually 11 February 1863)
1863February26Robroyston No 2BishopbriggsColin Dunlop & CoThomas KeanSinker45Ironstone mines – in shaftsFell out of the barrel and to the bottom of the shaft a distance of 8 fathoms

From Main body of report:
There were three persons on the "kettle" at the time the accident happened. It was in the act of being lowered, and had reached to within eight fathoms of the bottom. Nothing unusual had taken place, such as the kettle being driven against the walls of the shaft or otherwise ; and the only way in which those who accompanied him could account for it, was to suppose that he had lost his hold of the chains during some momentary fit of sickness.
1863March2Redding      Mary Bain         Death not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper report
1863March3Kersland Ironstone PitDalry Thomas Mitchell   Death not listed in Inspectors report
Injury to spine.  Injuries recieved by a quantity of rubbish falling on him from the roof of his working place in No2 mine Kersland Ironstone Pit on 19th January 1863
With thanks to Ann Brunt for this information
1863March4GauchlandGalstonGauchland Coal CoAlexander KerrCollier24In shaftsBy a small bolt falling from the pit mouth upon the deceased when crossing the shaft

From Main body of report: There is always a certain amount of risk in crossing a shaft, from the falling of loose stones, coals, &c., or, as in this case, from things falling from the surface at the pit-mouth, and when persons employed underground have occasion to go from one side of a shaft to another, the proper way is to pass by a roadway or opening formed round the end of the shaft for that purpose.

In this case there was an opening around the end of the shaft, though not very complete ; but underground workmen, and " bottomers" in particular, persons specially appointed to see that the shaft arrangements are carried out, very often cross the shaft in preference to going a few feet round about. The system is absurd, and the present case is a forcible illustration.
1863March5No 1 MorningsideWishawShotts Iron CoJas WatsonCollier24Falls of roofA piece of roofstone 9' x 4' x18' at face, in Virtue Well seam (Longwall) fell upon himNewspaper report - Cambusnethan pages
1863March11DysartDysartLord RosslynPeter AdamsonCollier12Falls of roofFall of top coal 5' x15' x 15' while the boy was passing under it with his tub 
1863March13DrummellierDennyWilliam Baird & CoDavid GillespieBoy15Ironstone mines – falls of ironstone and roofFall of roof while engaged “holing”Newspaper report - Stirlingshire pages
1863March13GauchlandGalstonGauchland Coal CoDuncan RamageCollier19Falls of coal and roofFall of roof at the face 
1863March16LawhillLanarkshireNKRobert Russell         Death not listed in Inspectors report Many thanks to John Graham for supplying these details Newspaper report - Cambusnethan pages
1863March26Dixton No 19CumnockWilliam Baird & CoJames DonallyDrawer27Ironstone mines – falls of ironstone and roofFall of roof in a drawing roadNewspaper report - Ayrshire pages
1863April4No 5 PolkemmetBathgateShotts Iron CoHugh AllanMiner--Ironstone mines – falls of roofFall of roof at faceNewspaper report
1863April7KinneilBo'nessGeorge Wilson & CoWilliam BrownMiner--Ironstone mines – falls of roofFall of roof at faceNewspaper report - Lothians pages
1863April10HurlfordHurlfordJohn HowieJames WallaceCollier29Falls of coal and roofFall of coal at the face Newspaper report - Ayrshire pages
1863 April 13 No 3 Lassodie Fife   John Addison     Not listed Death not listed in Inspectors report Newspaper report - Beath pages
1863April14Ayr, Sheep Park pitAyrJ T GordonEdward McEwenCollier35Falls of coal and roofFall of roof 
1863April22DrumbathieAirdrieDrumbathie Coal Co-----Pit-head man50In shaftsRan a tub into a pit 30 feet deep and was killed by falling down after itNewspaper report - New Monkland pages
1863May2GalstonGalstonJohn HorneEdward McGheeCollier23Falls of coal and roofFall of coal 
1863May6PolkemmetBathgateMonkland Steel CoPat RyderSinker--Ironstone mines – in shaftsThe kettle catched on buntons while ascending in a sinking pit, and he was pitched out, and fell to the pit bottom 
1863May8LochgellyLochgellyLochgelly Iron CoRobert BeveridgeDrawer14Falls of roofA piece of top coal in the Splint-and-Parrot seam fell upon deceased as he was passing under 
1863May19BredisholmBailliestonJohn YoungThomas FlinnBoy13Falls of coal and roofFall of roof 
1863May25WallifordMusselburghC & A ChristieWillm HowieCollier34Falls of roofA piece of top coal in “Great Seam” worked by “stoop and room” fell upon him as he was taking it down 
1863May30Greystone-leaWishawShotts Iron CoM CanobieFireman--Above groundA plug was driven into the end of a steam-pipe to prevent the steam which was escaping through a leaky valve, blowing into a cistern he was cleaning. The pressure blew the plug out and he was burnt by the steam and water that followed. Died this day. 
1863June2Armsheugh No 1IrvineMerry & CunninghamDaniel SymmCollier33Falls of coal and roofFall of coal and roof 
1863June3BinniehillSlammananA C BrownJohn ShawDrawer14In shaftsFell from Lady Grange seam to splint seam, a distance of 27 fathoms. Bottomers put on since 
1863June9StruthersKilmarnockJohn Gilmour & CoJohn EastonDep. Foreman35ExplosionsExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report: The workings in this pit, on account of troubles, were limited, and of an exploratory kind.

The accident took place in an abandoned part of the mine. No person had occasion to travel in it; and it was well known to the fireman that it contained fire-damp.
The deceased was acting as deputy overman, as least he was engaged attending to the details of management.
It would appear that on the day of the accident he and the regular fireman had gone in to the abandoned part of the mine above indicated, and, according to the fireman's explanation, for the purpose of taking out a part of the "brattice," employed in this case to direct the current of air to the face of the place known to contain firedamp; and while they were thus engaged the gas was ignited at one of their unprotected lights. They were both burned, and the deceased died from the effects of it.
1863June16BarbauchlawBathgateMonkland Steel CoWilliam StrangMiner--Ironstone mines – falls of roofFall of coal and stone 
1863June16Briggend, ElderslieJohnstoneW S DixonJohn ProvanMiner35Ironstone mines – in shaftsWas struck upon a scaffold by a stone while engaged stripping the shaft 
1863June19Shotts Iron WorksMotherwellShotts Iron CoWilliamson BartonDrawer16Ironstone mines – falls of roofPiece of stone fell on him while passing with his loaded hutch. He died on 16th July 
1863June25Armsheugh No 1IrvineMerry & CunninghamPatrick MaddenBoy16In shaftsBy the cage being raised while he was putting a hutch upon it

From Main body of report: According to the special rules of this colliery, there is a person stationed at the pit-bottom, whose duty it is to see the hutches with the loads placed safely upon the cages, and to give the necessary signals to the engineman, when men or materials require to be raised.

The deceased had on the day of the accident pushed forward his hutch in the usual way, for the purpose of placing it on the cage, when a boy, who worked on the opposite side, also pushed forward his hutch for the same purpose, and the two hutches met together on the cage ; of course neither of them getting properly on it.
I understand that the bottomer, who was usually stationed at the opposite side from the deceased, went to assist him to place his hutch properly upon the cage. Unfortunately, the poor lad, in his anxiety to get the hutch properly into its place, went upon the cage, which was suddenly lifted, and he, getting entangled with it and the sides of the shaft, received such injuries as proved fatal immediately afterwards.
There are defined signals by which the engineman is guided in his movements, and the persons employed underground trust implicitly to these signals.
In the present case the cage had been lifted through the culpable neglect of the engineman in failing to observe these important precautions. He was charged by the Procurator Fiscal of Ayr with culpable homicide. The case was brought before the sheriff substitute of Ayr and a jury. They found the charge proven, and he was sentenced to one month's imprisonment.
1863June26CambusnethanWishawD & J SneddonSam. McCutcheonCollier22Falls of roofKilled while knocking out props to “let down” the “falling” under the Pyotshaw coal 
1863June29CowdenbeathDunfermlineForth Iron CoRobert WatsonCollier55Falls of roofA piece of top coal 4 ½' x15' x 15' which he was trying to take down fell upon him 
1863June30Gartshore No 1KilsythW Baird & CoJames CarrolInclineman17Ironstone mines – miscellaneousWas jammed between the empty and full load 
1863July6ArnistonDalkeithJohn Christie----- BlackRoadsman--Falls of roofHe was “gearing” a road when a large stone fell upon him 
1863July9Govan No 4GlasgowW S DixonBernard BoyceBrusher60Falls of coal and roofFall of stones at the face 
1863July11WoodsideHamiltonJas Smith & SonThos. MelvinDrawer45In shaftsHe fell down to a lower seam. The scaffold had been removed unknown to him during the previous night and had not been replaced by the oversman 
1863July13BraeheadBailliestonChas Tennant & CoH McRoryCollier--In shafts Overwinding. These men went into the cage to ascend, but the bell-rope broke, after striking one, which was the signal for "coals on," and the engineman, not knowing men were on, went faster than usual, until with the light load he was unable to stop the engine in time to prevent the accident

From Main body of report:
Mrs. Nochar, mother to William Nochar, who was killed on 13th July 1863, by over-winding at Braehead Colliery, sued Messrs. Charles Tennant & Co., the proprietors, for damages in name of reparation and solatium, for the loss, sustained by her on account of the death of her son. Sheriff Henry Glassford Bell, of Glasgow, the judge, in his award "Finds that the pursuer is a widow, of 56 years of age, and the deceased, who was 20 at the time of his death, resided with, and contributed to, his mother's support; the wages he was earning, and which he shared with the pursuer, being about 20s. a week : finds said pursuer entitled to reparation both for loss and in name of solatium, and assesses the same at the sum of £80 sterling, for which decerns against the defenders : Finds them also liable in expenses, allows an account thereof to be given in, and remits the same to the auditor of the court, to tax and report." (Please note this is from 1865 report)
Wm NocherCollier--
1863July13Curriemire No 2KilsythW Baird & CoWilliam WalkerBoy11Ironstone mines – explosionsExplosion of fire damp 
1863July25Inglestone MineDennyW Baird & CoArchibald NeilOversman53Ironstone mines – explosionsExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report: The deceased, Robert Neil [sic], took the responsible charge of the mine and it was his practice to examine the works in the morning before the workmen were allowed to enter to their working places. He was alone when the explosion took place. But it is supposed that he had taken it for granted that a certain district of the working would be free of fire-damp, and in making his examination of it had not taken the precaution to use his safety lamp.

Neil was an experienced workman. Unfortunately the mistake made by him is too common among underground firemen. They, perhaps, from experience, find that a certain district of a mine is generally free of fire-damp, and trusting to it think it unnecessary to use a safety lamp till within a reasonable distance of where fire-damp is known or may be anticipated; forgetful that some temporary derangement, it may be at a main trap door or aircourse, may render a district of the mine dangerous which under ordinary circumstances would have been quite safe.
The proper way to examine a mine in the morning is to assume that danger may exist in any part of it, and on no account to introduce an unprotected light till after every accessible and working place has been carefully examined.
1863August9WemyssKirkcaldyJ E Wemyss MPP MatthiesonRoadsman55In shaftsSqueezed by cage in pit. Want of proper signalsNewspaper report - Fife pages
1863August12StruthersKilmarnockJohn Gilmour & CoAndrew Buntin, senBottomer50In shaftsBy falling from a mid-working to the bottom of the shaft

From Main body of report: In this pit there were two seams being worked; the "upper," at 46 fathoms, and the "lower," at 62 fathoms.

The deceased was bottomer at the upper seam, where he had been employed for a few weeks, and previous to that he had been stationed at the pit-bottom or lower seam.
There was no person near when the accident happened; but a drawer who was approaching the pit-bottom with a loaded hutch heard a noise as of some one falling down the shaft, and saw the glare of a light.
From the fact of the deceased's flask being found close to the side of the pit without the stopper, it is supposed that at the time of the accident he had been in the act of collecting water from the side of the shaft in to his flask, and in doing this he had either overbalanced or otherwise missed his footing, and fell down the shaft a distance of 16 fathoms.
1863August12WestcommonGlasgowWilson & CoAlex BrysonForeman engineer36Ironstone mines – above groundGot entangled with the machinery while taking measurements of some of the working parts

From Main body of report: The deceased was a foreman mechanical engineer, and at the time of the accident he was engaged making measurements of part of the machinery for the purpose of introducing some new fittings. The engine, which had been stopped to enable him to make the measurements, was started as soon as they were made, and it appears that he had gone out of the way to a safe distance to jot the necessary markings, &c., but on returning it is supposed to make a check measurement he had either missed his footing, or got entangled with part of the revolving machinery, and received such injuries as shortly after proved fatal.
1863August12WestmuirGlasgowRobert Gray & CoArchibald BurnsCollier46Falls of coal and roofFall of coal 
1863August13SunnysideWishawArchibald RussellJohn AllanCollier30Falls of roofFall of roof while taking out pillars 
1863 August 16 Wemyss Colliery Fife   George Haye     Not listed Death not listed in Inspectors report- Natural causes Newspaper report - Fife pages
1863August19Eglinton No 9KilwinningArchd KennethJames BlaneCollier50Falls of coal and roofFall of coal and roof 
1863August26Bartonholm No 3KilwinningEglinton Iron CoJohn BlueDrawer13Falls of coal and roofFall of roof 
1863August28CuttlehillDunfermlineHenderson & WallaceAlex PenmanCollier19Falls of roofFall of roof. A piece of stone fell out between 2 “lipes” Newspaper report - Fife pages
1863September1Abercorn No 5JohnstoneMerry & CunninghamWilliam BroadbyMiner33Ironstone mines – falls of ironstone and roofFall of ironstone at face  
1863September1Craigston No 1CumnockW Baird & CoRobert NeilMiner22Ironstone mines – falls of ironstone and roofFall of roof at the face  
1863September1Dalharco No 1DalmellingtonDalmellington Iron CoAlex BellCollier55Falls of coal and roofFall of coal  
1863September2Ayr, Sheep Park pitAyrJ T GordonHugh TannockDrawer20ExplosionsExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report: In this case it is supposed that the accident happened at a point leading into a working place, but which had been abandoned for two or three weeks previous to the accident. It was known that a limited quantity of fire-damp sometimes lay in a high part of the roof there. Tannock, one of the deceased, had been observed going in toward this place, when shortly after the explosion happened.

According to the second general rule of the statute, it is provided that "All entrances to any place not in actual course of working and extension, and suspected to contain dangerous gas of any kind, shall be properly fenced off so as to prevent access thereto."
The Procurator Fiscal has instituted proceedings against the managers of the colliery, but up to this time no decision has been given.
John McLeanCollier40
1863September7Hawhill No 3BailliestonJames McKenzieCharles O'NeilLabourer30Falls of coal and roofFall of roof  
1863September8Gartshore No 1KilsythW Baird & CoWilliam ThompsonEngineman22Ironstone mines – above groundGot entangled with the machinery when oiling it

From Main body of report: The mechanical arrangements at this mine are of the usual description. There are two steam engines; one is used for pumping water, and the other for winding purposes.

The deceased was one of the enginemen. It appears that at the time of the accident he was about to leave off his shift ; and, according, to the information of the fireman he observed him put the pumping engine in motion, and take up the, oil "pourie," apparently with the view of oiling some part of the machinery, when a few minutes after he heard a cry, and on going to the pumping engine, which had suddenly stopped, he found the deceased lying jammed partly between the "wheel" and the "pinion," fearfully mangled.
Judging from the position in which the body was found, drawn in between the wheel and pinion, it appeared to me that while in the act of oiling the shafting of the pumping engine he had slipped or missed his footing, and in coming in contact with the revolving wheel had by it been drawn into the face of the pinion as above described.
The present case is a very fair illustration of how such accidents are produced. The machinery a few moments before the accident happened was standing. It appears the deceased had considered that it required to be oiled, but before performing this simple operation he put it in motion, without apparently thinking of the increased risks to which he was exposing himself by doing so.
1863September9DysartDysartLord RosslynJas CunninghameCollier66Falls of roofThis old man went in below some top coal he was trying to take down and it fell upon him  
1863September11BalquhatstoneSlammananJohn Watson junAlex GairdnerCollier29Falls of roofA piece of the sandstone roof of the Cox-rod coal fell upon him at his wall face  
1863September28BredisholmBailliestonProvanhall Coal CoP GallocharCollier14Falls of roofA piece of Pyotshaw which the men had just left off working fell upon him as he was passing under  
1863 September 30 Kennetpans     Isaac     Not listed Death not listed in Inspectors report Newspaper report - Clackmannan pages NB No death certificate can be located for this name
1863October10 Vogrie      William Duncan      Not listedDeath not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper report - Lothians pages
1863October15Drumpeller No 9CoatbridgeTrustees of the late John WilsonPatrick MooneyPony driver15Falls of coal and roofFall of stones at the face  
1863October15No 2 Linwood ironstone pit      William Anderson      Not listedDeath not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper report - Stirlingshire pages
1863October21Kersland No 2DalryW Baird & CoJohn WalshMiner20Ironstone mines – falls of ironstone and roofFall of ironstone while “holing” under it  
1863November3CorselKilwinningEglinton Iron CoThomas BinghamCollier31Falls of coal and roofFall of roof  
1863November3DalkeithDalkeithDuke of BuccleuchRobert WatsonDrawer13Falls of roofA piece of coal in the “Beefie” seam came over on this boy by the negligence of his uncle who was working with him  
1863November4Hurlford No 12HurlfordAllan, Gilmour & CoRobert RowleyRoadsman26In shaftsFell down the shaft while assisting to change a cage   
1863November4WoodhallAirdrieMerry & CunninghamM EastonCollier20Falls of roofKilled by a stone falling on him after he had knocked out the prop which kept it up  
1863November5MorningsideWishawShotts Iron CoL HawthorneDrawer13Falls of roofA piece of coal in “Virtue Well” seam fell over upon him at the face  
1863November12Palace Craig No 6AirdrieWilliam Baird & CoJames CondieCollier20ExplosionsExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report:
The deceased worked in a "wall" adjoining to one where a small quantity of fire-damp lay in a high part of the roof. The place had been stopped on account of the fire-damp for two days, and the necessary precautions were taken to prevent any person from entering it. It appears that he had been engaged in his place on the day of the accident for at least seven hours, but had afterwards, for some purpose, gone into the adjoining wall with his naked light, and ignited the fire-damp which lay there. He was burned, it was supposed not seriously, but died from the effects of it a few days after.
1863November12PatherWishawBoyd & SpencerA RussellCollier23Falls of roofRoof fell upon him while taking out coal stoops Newspaper report - Lanarkshire pages
NB Death certificate and newspaper give name as Archibald Livingstone
1863November18Whifflat No 14CoatbridgeTrustees of the late John WilsonJohn RaeBrusher45Falls of coal and roofFall of roof  
1863November18Binniehill Colliery      Alexander Burt   7Not listed Death not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper report - Stirlingshire pages
Archibald Thomson   40
Robert Craig   24
1863November19DennymillDennyRobert AddieJames CurrieBoy12Ironstone mines – above groundBreakage of one of the pit ropes, by which the deceased was struck on the pitheadNewspaper report - Stirlingshire pages
1863November20BredisholmBailliestonProvanhall Coal CoBernd DivineCollier22Falls of roofFall of roof in Pyotshaw workings. No props up.  
1863November21Cadder No 3BishopbriggsCarron Iron CoPeter DrummondMiner35Ironstone mines – falls of ironstone and roofFall of roof at the face Newspaper report - Lanarkshire pages
1863November26CroftheadWilsontownW S DixonH O'NielMiner--Ironstone mines – in shaftsCage catched while he was descending and he was pitched out on to a scaffold. He died in the infirmary  
1863November27CraigstonCumnockWilliam Baird & CoJohn DonoughieCollier35Falls of coal and roofFall of coal at face  
1863November27HaugheadHamiltonMerry & CunninghamHenry WilsonCollier19ExplosionsExplosion of fire damp shaft below scaffold on which he was standing. Not ventilated

From 1866 report: During last year Mrs. Wilson, the mother of a young man who was killed by an explosion of fire-damp, in 1863, in Messrs, Merry and Cunninghame's pit at Haugh-head, near Hamilton, sued that firm for damages for the loss of her son, and a jury awarded her £100. The defenders applied for and got a new trial in January last, but the jury again gave a verdict in her favour for £100.

Newspaper report - Hamilton pages

1863November27South DeanKilmarnockRobert BrownAllan ReidCollier27Falls of coal and roofFall of coal at face  
1863November28Drumpeller No 11CoatbridgeTrustees of the late John WilsonHenry McConnelCollier19Falls of coal and roofFall of coal at face  
1863December2KinneilBo'nessGeorge Wilson & CoCharles BrownMiner--Ironstone mines – explosionsExplosion of fire damp. Neglect of 2nd General rule  
1863December3DrumgrayAirdrieDrumgray Coal CoJames MarshalEngineman--Ironstone mines – above groundFound dead among the wheels of his engine  
1863December4KinneilBo'nessGeorge Wilson & CoGeorge SheddonMiner--Ironstone mines – explosionsExplosion of fire damp. Neglect of 1st General rule  
1863December5MorningsideWishawJames BennieRichard KyleDrawer14Falls of roofFall of roof in the drawing road  
1863December9GreenbankDalryMerry & CunninghamArthur HillMiner22Ironstone mines – miscellaneousJammed between the roof and the hutch he was assisting to lower

From Main body of report:
The deceased had been assisting one of the regular drawers to lower a hutch of ironstone upon one of the usual drawing roads. The drawer at the time of the accident was behind, and he in front of it. The roadway was not steep, and a loaded hutch could be easily controlled by two stoppers. It is assumed that the deceased had accidentally struck his head against the roof, and before he could recover himself it had got jammed between the roof and the descending hutch.
1863December15CarronhallFalkirkCarron Iron CoMargaret RankinPit-head woman55Above groundFatally injured by waggon wheel running over her at pit mouthNewspaper report- Stirlingshire pages
1863December16GreenhillHolytownRobert YoungJohn LithgowSinker--Ironstone mines – in shaftsThe winding drum was not properly kept in gear, and the wheels got clear, and he was killed by the rope falling upon him

From Main body of report: The accident at Greenhill from the engineman neglecting to secure the engine in proper winding gear, is more noticeable from the fact that in January of this year just one month afterwards, a precisely similar accident occurred at the same pit also attended with loss of life. There was nothing unusual in the arrangement of the machinery, and it was all new and in good order.

The proprietor at once stopped all operations after the second accident until a second engine was erected for pumping, which did away with the necessity of throwing the winding apparatus out of gear for that purpose. There can be no doubt that there is less risk of accidents when there are separate engines for pumping and winding on a sinking pit.

Newspaper report - Bothwell pages

1863December21Hashwood No 3DalryMerry & CunninghamDonald McDonaldSinker46Ironstone mines – in shaftsThe drum shaft got in motion when “out of gear” and the rope and kettle were dashed to the bottom upon the deceased, a distance of 123 fathoms

From Main body of report: The engineman had on the morning of the accident wished to change the position of the rope with relation to the "lift" of the engine ; and in cases of sinking pits this change, to regulate the position of the " lift " to suit the power, requires to be made occasionally.

At the time of the accident the engineman and pit-headman had been engaged making one of these changes. They had ungeared the pinion or driving wheel, with the wheel upon the drum shaft; and the sinking kettle attached to the end of the rope, it is presumed, was rested on the scaffold at the pit mouth.
The rope was composed of wire, round, and as usual had a piece of chain attached to the end of it for the purpose of forming connections. As the drum and the top of the "strike board" where the kettle rested were near the same level, it may be assumed that if the rope had been of a uniform weight, and laid on the pulley, it would have had little or no tendency to cause a movement of the drum. But the chain attached to the end of the rope being of greater weight, in the present case perhaps a hundredweight, it appears that this excess with the drum shaft out of gear, was sufficient to produce motion. This movement, which at first must have been very slight, would gradually as the chain lowered increase, till once the "kettle" would be drawn over into the shaft, when the velocity would go on progressing.
The engineman and pit-headman had observed the movement of the drum, and had taken steps to prevent the descent of the rope by endeavouring to put the machinery into gear. The rapid rate at which the drum shaft was revolving, however, prevented this being accomplished. Consequently the whole length of the rope was uncoiled from the drum, upwards of 800 feet, and with the kettle were dashed to the bottom, where three sinkers were engaged. One escaped without much injury, but the other two were killed upon the spot.
The engineman and pit-headman had made great exertions to stop the machinery and were found after the accident lying among the broken parts of it severely injured.
The neglect in this case of not taking the necessary precautions to prevent the drum from getting into motion when uncontrolled and out of gear was evidently the cause of accident.
Thomas BrownSinker26
1863December22StevensonStevensonMerry & CunninghamJohn WardCollier18Above groundCrushed by getting entangled with the pumping crank

From Main body of report: In this case the sufferer was a collier, and on the day of the accident he had occasion to leave his work for the purpose of going to the surface.

On quitting the cage at the pitmouth, it is supposed to go in to the engine-house, instead of passing by the usual gangway, he had gone round the end of the pumping machinery, and in some way got in contact with the revolving crank which works on the end of the pumping shaft, from which he received such injuries as must have proved immediately fatal.
From the position in which the body was thrown it was some time, probably not less than half an hour, before the accident was discovered.
1863December25ColtnessWishawA G SimpsonAlex GibbDrawer14In shaftsKnocked off cage by stone while ascending pit  
1863December29Annbank No 4AyrJ T GordonJohn LogLabourer22Above groundMissed his footing while engaged assisting the engineman to start the winding machinery

From Main body of report: The deceased, who was an assistant pit headman, had gone on to the drum shaft wall for the purpose of assisting the engineman to start the engine, which at the time had been standing on the "centre."

On leaving the machinery, after assisting to put it in motion, his foot appears to have slipped, and he fell down upon the arms of the revolving drum, a distance of 4 1/2 feet or thereby, by which he received such injuries as proved fatal.

Last Updated 4th April 2012