Scottish Mining Website

1880 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) killedOccupationAgeCategory (if given)Cause of death and remarksExtra details
1880January7Overtown Station No 1Cambusnethan, LKSBrand & CoBernard GilliganCollier--Falls of sidesAt stooping 
1880January16WoodyettsDennyR Addie & SonAlex McLachlanMiner32In ironstone/fire clay minesWhen preparing to blast and whilst drawing the needle (copper) the shot exploded

From Main body of report:
Happened in a mine being driven in "whin." The deceased and his neighbour had just completed a bore hole, which they had charged with powder, and inserted the usual stemming. I understand they were in the act of withdrawing the "needle" - a copper one - when the shot exploded, the deceased was fatally injured, but singularly his companion escaped. The mode of withdrawing the "needle" was by putting a "jumper" or iron rod through the eye of the "needle," and whilst the deceased struck it - the jumper - with a hammer, his neighbour held it in position.
1880January20Bothwell Park No 1Bothwell, LKSWm Baird & CoJohn FeeDrawer14Miscellaneous underground- by tubs and tramsTub went over him on a drawing road 
1880January25FerrytonClackmannanClackmannan Coal CoWm HallCollier--Falls of roofAt face, long wall. Died 14th February 
1880January27Arden No 2New Monkland, LKSWm Black & SonsJas. WaddellSinker--Miscellaneous in shaftsFell with a scaffold which was insecurely lashed 
1880January28FoulshielsWhitburn, LinlithgowRobt. HendersonEdward DevlinBottomer32Miscellaneous in shaftsThe engineman felt something jamming the cage and stopped it. Deceased was found squeezed between the cage and the door heads. There was no one else at the pit bottom 
1880January31GartnessNew Monkland, LKSGartness Mineral Co LtdHenry HewittLocomotive brakesman26On surface – miscellaneousJammed between buffers while passing out after coupling a wagon to the engine 
1880January31GlenclellandDalziel, LKSKerr & MitchellPat. MonaghanCollier--Falls of sidesWhile taking down head coal. Died 3rd April 
1880January31KilgrammieGirvanCowper & McHarrieWm GallacherCollier29In coal minesFall of roof at face 
1880January31KirkwoodCoatbridgeSummerlee Iron CoFrancis NicholasCollier24In coal minesFall of roof at face 
1880February9HallcraigCarluke, LKSColtness Iron CoWm CadzowDrawer13In ironstone minesFall of roof on drawing road 8 yards from face. Long wall 
1880February9IbroxGovanW S DixonWilliam FlemingMiner17In ironstone/fire clay minesFall of roof whilst engaged putting up wood 
1880February10AllanshawHamilton, LKSAllanshaw Coal CoRobt. KelsoCollier24Falls of sidesAt stooping 
1880February13Garriongill No 1Cambusnethan, LKSColtness Iron CoJohn PaulCollier73Falls of roofAt face on entering in the morning, stoop and room 
1880February20CowdenbeathBeath, FIFCowdenbeath Coal CoJohn Morganlocomotive brakesman19On surface – miscellaneousCrushed between buffers of locomotive and waggon 
1880February23CronberryLugarEglinton Iron CoJohn RichmondMiner36In ironstone/fire clay minesFall of roof 
1880February25KirkwoodCoatbridgeJohn HendrieJames HigginsCollier36In coal minesFall of coal 
1880February26Dunsyston No 2Shotts, LKSSummerlee Iron CoMich. ConnellyCollier--Falls of roofAt face while holing 
1880February28PennyveenieDalmellingtonDalmellington Iron CoAlex JonesFireman44In coal minesExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report:
Happened to a fireman, who it appears had gone into an abandoned road in search of a “sleeper” when a slight explosion took place. There is some uncertainty as to how the explosion happened, the ordinary shift was at work, and from all accounts no one was aware of the presence of fire damp at that time.
1880March2Niddrie No 11Portobello, EdinburghBenhar Coal Co LtdWilliam GraingerCollier33In shafts – whilst ascending or descending by machineryThe spur gear of the winding engine broke, and they fell with the cage to the bottom 
Phillip BraidyCollier17
1880March14Blantyre No 4Blantyre. LKSWm Dixon LtdAnd. McLeanCollier21Miscellaneous underground- suffocation by gasesSupposed to have been suffocated by an underground fire. His body was found on the 12th January 1881Newspaper report - Blantyre pages
1880March18BroxburnUphall, LinlithgowBroxburn Oil Co LtdHenry BlackMiner55In shale minesFall of shale while holing. Stooping 
1880March20Greenhead No 3Cambusnethan, LKSColtness Iron CoJames RaeCollier18Falls of roofAt face 
1880March20WellwoodLugarEglinton Iron CoJoseph MuirFireman42In ironstone/fire clay minesBy falling part way down shaft

From Main body of report:
Took place in a shaft, where a rope working in the pumping division for the purpose of haulage, caught the “buntens” which separate the pumping from the winding division, part of it projected in to the latter division, and the ascending cage got entangled with it about 20 fathoms from the bottom of the pit. The oversman being at the pithead at the time was lowered to the cage by means of a steam crab, and with an assistant was disengaging the rope, when the deceased, who was fireman in the mine, went to a midworking eight fathoms above the bottom, but 12 fathoms under where the cage was stopped, and commenced to climb up the "slides" in order to assist in relieving the cage. It is supposed that he had climbed to within four fathoms of the cage when he lost his hold and fell to the bottom. The injuries, though not supposed to be serious at the time, caused death six days after.
1880March23Lassodie No 9Beath, FIFLassodie Colliery CoWm. PenmanCollier2 -Falls of sidesAt face 
1880March29AnnockledgeIrvineAnnocklodge Oil CoThomas WelshCollier18In ironstone/fire clay minesFall of shale at face 
1880March29Blantyre No 1 EllBlantyre. LKSWm Dixon LtdHugh SherryCollier21Falls of sidesAt face while holing 
1880March30AuchinharvieSaltcoatsM & CunninghamThomas JonesCollier40In coal minesFall of roof 
1880April3Fernigare No 2Hamilton, LKSArchd. RussellPatrick CurranCollier16Explosion of fire dampDied 12th April – see report

From Main body of report:
There as one explosion of firedamp which resulted in injury to three persons, one of whom died a week afterwards. A collier and his two sons were commencing stooping operations, and were driving the first “lift” alongside of an old room which was standing at a hitch 8 yards up. The roof in this room had fallen after the props had been taken out a day or two previously, and some firedamp collected in it which the fireman had failed to observe in the morning. A further fall shortly after they began work brought the gas out upon the men's naked lights.
1880April5Huttonhill No 1Bothwell, LKSHuttonhill Coal CoWm. ChalmersBrusher40Miscellaneous underground- explosions of gunpowderWhile charging a hole the powder exploded 
1880April8CapringtonKilmarnockW S CunninghamJames StewartCollier16In coal minesFall of roof 
1880April10MiskKilwinningEglinton Iron CoAlex BlaneBrusher50In coal minesFall of roof while engaged taking it down 
1880April12DalzielDalziel, LKSJohn McAndrew & CoJohn Hinshelwoodlocomotive brakesman18On surface – miscellaneousFell off train of wagons and was run over 
1880April14TillicoultryTillicoultry, CLKAlloa Coal CoWm. PattersonCollier64Falls of roofAt face 
1880April30DalquharranMayboleT F KennedyJas GallowayCollier37In coal minesFall of coal 
1880May3Stonecraigs No 4Cambusnethan, LKSColtness Iron CoWm. BrysonCollier25Falls of sidesAt face, head coal 
1880May5CardonaldGovanJames Dunlop & CoWilliam CarleMiner17In ironstone/fire clay minesExplosion of fire damp, injured 21st April, died 5th May

From Main body of report:
Took place in an ironstone mine, and was occasioned by the deceased, who, while passing to his work with his lamp on his head, ignited a small quantity of gas which had collected in the upper part of one of the roadways, and by which he was injured about the face and arms. The injuries caused by the explosion were at the time supposed to be slight, but death ensued two weeks after.
1880May5QuarterDennyWm Baird & CoJames StewartCollier33In coal minesFall of coal and roof 
1880May13BalgrayBeithJames DunsmuirJames DunsmuirOwner30In coal minesFall of roof 
1880May13SwineridgemuirBeithM & CunninghamJohn MullenMiner18In ironstone/fire clay minesWhilst engaged blasting shot exploded before he got out of its way

From Main body of report:
The second also occurred whilst blasting. The deceased was alone at the time in one of the ordinary "walls" of the mine, and after boring a hole at the face, he charged it with powder in the customary way, using a straw filled with powder for a fuse. It is not known how the accident happened, but the shot must have gone off before he had time to leave the place; he was severely injured and died in consequence of the injuries about three weeks after.
1880May15GarscaddenDuntocherM & CunninghamJames JohnstoneLabourer57In ironstone/fire clay minesFell from a scaffold, a distance of 20 feet

From Main body of report:
Took place in an ironstone mine and was occasioned by a “hutch runner” falling about 20 feet from a scaffold, whilst attempting to relieve a hutch he was in the act of emptying, and which had got jammed on the front of the tip.
1880May17GauchallandGalstonGauchalland Coal CoWm BrownRoadsman17In coal minesFall of roof 
And. RobertsonRoadsman50In coal minesFall of roof
1880May25Newbattle, BryansNewbattle, EdinburghMarquis of LothianWm. RobertsonAssistant bottomer63Miscellaneous in shaftsA loaded tub slipped out of top deck and some coals struck him. Died 27th May 
1880May26Parkead No 2Dalziel, LKSJohn WatsonMatthew KennedyCollier30Falls of sidesWhile taking down coal. Stooping 
1880May30Carronhall No 5Bothkennar, STICarron CoJames SharpEngineman54On surface – miscellaneousScalded by hot water and steam while cleaning out the overflow pipe from hot-well during the time the engine was working 
1880June1WellwoodMuirkirkEglinton Iron CoJames ParkCollier32In coal minesFall of coal 
1880June11Blantyre No 3 EllBlantyre. LKSWm Dixon LtdWm GardinerBrusher25Falls of roofOn drawing road while taking down loose stone 
1880June15North Motherwell No 2Dalziel, LKSMerry & CunninghamJohn SmithStone miner39Miscellaneous underground- explosions of gunpowderPremature explosion of a shot. He lighted the straw instead of the match 
1880June18GilmilnscroftAuchinleckGilmour, Wood & AndersonMichael Curdie, senCollier43In coal minesExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report:
Occurred in a mine where fire damp had not been reported for at least four months before the accident. The deceased and his son had been at work for about 8 hours on the day of the explosion, and the latter, while returning from the pit bottom t the place where his father was at work, ignited some fire damp, by which he was burned. Though the explosion was slight the effect was to derange the ventilation, and three hours elapsed before it could be sufficiently restored to enable them to recover the bodies. In both cases death resulted, I believe, from the effects of the after damp.
Michael Curdie, junCollier17
1880June25DalzielDalziel, LKSWishaw Coal CoJames KellyCollier14Falls of sidesWhile “holing” 
1880June25GartshoreKilsythWm Baird & CoPat DunneryPony driver16In ironstone/fire clay minesWas run over by hutches

From Main body of report:
Happened to a pony driver; it was his duty to draw the hutches from a lye or siding, where the colliers delivered them, to the pitbottom in races of 6 hutches. Before removal, however, he had to arrange the “race” that is, attach the hutches together by short coupling chains, insert a “snibble” in each, and remove a block placed upon the road for security until the load was about to be removed. It appears that on the day of the accident, he started a “race” of full hutches in the ordinary way, but before proceeding more than 30 yards he in some way got entangled with the hutches and was run over by them. It was found on after investigation that he had neglected to put in the snibbles before staring, and it is supposed that on discovering this overlook he had attempted to disengage his horse and so missed his footing, and was run over by the hutches.
1880June25GrougarHurlfordEglinton Iron CoJohn HopkinsPony driver13In coal minesFell before a “race” of hutches

From Main body of report:
Took place upon a “dook.” The deceased, a pony driver, was in the act of taking a “race” of empty hutches from the pit bottom to dispatch it down the dook, but having neglected to complete the coupling, as soon as the front part of the race passed over the brow of the dook, it got rapidly into motion, and capsized about 50 yards down. The deceased who sat upon the front overturned with it, and was found lying under the first hutch dead.
1880June25KersePatnaM & CunninghamJohn SkillenBottomer22In ironstone/fire clay minesWas caught by the cage when crossing the shaft

From Main body of report:
Occurred when the deceased, one of the bottomers, was crossing the shaft, by the cage being lowered upon him.
1880June25LucknowStevenstonEglinton Iron CoChas. SharkyBrusher50In coal minesFall of roof 
1880July1Longrigg No 1New Monkland, LKSJames Nimmo & CoRobert HeapsCollier37Falls of roofAt face 
1880July1SouterhouseCoatbridgeSouterhouse Coal CoCharles LuskCollier50In coal minesFall of roof 
1880July2Muiredge No 1Leven, FIFBowman and CoArchd. IzattContractor--Miscellaneous underground- on inclined planesWhile riding on hutches he attempted to jump off at a level and was jammed 
1880July7HillDalserf, LKSMcLean, Dalzell & CoJohn CopelandRoadsman40On surface – miscellaneousWhile disloading a fly wheel from a wagon by a crane the chain slipped and the wheel jammed him 
1880July9Raith, Lady PitAuchtertool, FIFLochgelly Iron & Coal Co LtdAlex. ToddLabourer55On surface – miscellaneousJammed between a boiler and the chimney while assisting to get the former from a wagon to its seat 
1880July16FarmeRutherglenA FairieJas TurkentineBrusher50In coal minesFall of roof whilst about to take it down 
1880July28Balbardie Bog PitBathgate, LinlithgowHenry Walker & SonHenry PhilipsRoadsman44Sundries undergroundJammed by a pump rod which he was lifting. Died 4th August 
1880August2QuarterDennyWm Baird & CoJames MuirCollier23In coal minesFall of coal and roof 
1880August3Quarter No 4Hamilton, LKSColin Dunlop & CoDavid WhiteCollier20Falls of roofAt face 
1880August7Addiewell No 11, PolbethWest Calder, EdinburghYoungs Paraffin Light and Mineral Oil Co LtdJas CampbellMiner23In shale minesFall of shale while holing. Long wall 
1880August9Kelty No 1Beath, FIFFife Coal Co LtdPeter RobertsonCollier33Falls of roofAt face 
1880August16RedburnIrvineEglinton Iron CoWm DonaldsonFireman35In coal minesExplosion of fire damp

From Main body of report:
Happened to two experienced firemen. I understand that on the Saturday evening before the the accident a shift of men discovered, in an exploring mine in which they were working, a small accumulation of fire damp, I presume, from having laid open a “cutter” or “rent”. The gas did not prevent them completing their shift, but it had been of such importance as to induce them to call the oversman's attention to it, and according to his explanation he afterwards saw the fireman who had charge of the mine, and requested him to be careful on Monday morning while making his examination, in case the gas should continue to be given off and so accumulate during the cessation of labour on Sunday. Apparently some attention had been paid in consequence of this warning, for the deceased had taken the precaution to get his neighbour, who was fireman in another seam, to accompany him. So far as is known they descended the shaft shortly after midnight, or early on the morning of the accident, taking their safety lamps and open lights with them. Their usual time of returning having passed, those at the pithead began to fear for their safety, and the oversman and others descended the shaft in search of them; they ultimately went towards the place where firedamp had been discovered, and where evidence existed of a recent explosion. The ventilation was deranged, and after repeated attempts to enter the mine the sufferers were reached in the evening. They were burned, but it is more than probable that death was caused by inhaling the vitiated air of the mine. Notwithstanding that the deceased were experienced men, and specially cautioned in this particular case, they had inconsiderately gone into the mine with one or more open lights and come in contact with the gas, which under the circumstances, they ought to have anticipated.
Jas CarswellFireman53In coal mines
1880August21BlackstonePaisleyBlackstone Mineral CoJohn BeveridgeMiner28In ironstone/fire clay minesFall of roofNewspaper report - Renfrewshire pages
1880August25GarscubeMaryhillR Addie & SonDavid AllanSinker24In ironstone/fire clay minesFall of roof 
1880August28LumphinnansBallingry, FIFLumphinnans Coal CoDavid Rosslocomotive brakesman17On surface – miscellaneousRun over by wagons while attempting to sprag them 
1880September1HillDalserf, LKSMcLean, Dalzell & CoDaniel WatsonCollier--Falls of sidesWhile “holing” 
1880September10Blantyre No 2Blantyre. LKSWm Dixon LtdJno. NicholApprentice mason14On surface – miscellaneousRun over by a wagon while attempting to sprag it 
1880September14Portland No 8HurlfordEglinton Iron CoJohn RossCollier31In coal minesFall of roof 
1880September15Raith, Lady PitAuchtertool, FIFLochgelly Iron & Coal Co LtdMichael MillerRoadsman45Falls of sidesWhile holing props which had been taken out to allow the head coal to fall. The props should have been placed outside of the unsupported head coal. Stooping 
1880September17LochheadDunfermline, FIFAlex Wilson & SonRobt. DitchburnMiner45In fire clay minesFall of fire clay while holing. Stoop and room 
1880September20BlairDalryEglinton Iron CoDavid MasseyMiner52In ironstone/fire clay minesCrushed by hutches on engine dook

From Main body of report:
Took place on an engine plane, and was occasioned by the deceased attempting to get on to a train while passing the end of the roadway which led in to his working place.
1880September21Trees No 1Bathgate, LinlithgowWm TorranceAdam SpaldingCollier34Falls of sidesWhile “holing” in a 10 feet place 
1880September22TwecharKilsythWm Baird & CoRobert RankineChain runner20In ironstone/fire clay minesFound run over by hutches on a dook

From Main body of report:
Occurred upon an engine plane, the sufferer was the person engaged as chain runner, who after signalling the race away, sat down, between the rails, in front of it, and was run over. No one saw the accident take place, but a drawer who had been at the foot of the incline shortly before the accident, stated that after the deceased signalled the train away, more than once, he sat down between the rails about 5 yards in front of it, and that he himself sat for a short time beside him, but finding the race was not drawn away at the time, he returned to his working place leaving the deceased sitting between the rails; upon going to the lye, at the foot of the incline, some time after, he found the deceased lying dead under one of the hutches about three yards further up the “dook” than where he left him. At the time of the accident the deceased was working an extra shift, and it is supposed that after he was left alone he had been overcome by sleep.
1880September24Polton No 2Cockpen, EdinburghPolton Coal Co LtdArchd McNeilSinker36Falling from part way downFell off scaffold while repairing pump rods 
1880September25BoigN. CumnockLanemark Coal CoJames HarperCollier28In coal minesFall of roof 
1880September30BarrwoodKilsythWm Baird & CoJames WillansRoadsman42In coal minesFall of roof 
1880October1CanobieCanobieDuke of BuccleuchJames MurrayCollier48In coal minesFall of coal. Injured 17th July 
1880October2AitkenheadMount FloridaG Crookston and sonJohn DagnetCollier35In coal minesFall of coal 
1880October9Auchenheath No 4Lesmahagow, LKSNitshill & Lesmahagow Coal CoRobt. MortonCollier48Falls of roofAt face 
1880October11RosehallCoatbridgeR Addie & SonJohn CummockCollier25In coal minesFall of coal 
1880October14Bathville No 4Bathgate, LinlithgowJames WoodJames FrameCollier20Falls of roofAt face 
1880October14FergushillKilwinningA Finnie & SonJohn CampbellBrusher33In coal minesFall of roof. Died 14 days after the accident 
1880October19Longlee No 2Dalserf, LKSWm Barr & Sons---- StewartCollier13Falls of roofOn drawing road 6 yards from face. StoopingFirst name is not given by the inspectors report.  An anonymous contributor has supplied the firstname Walter
1880October22Drumbow No 2New Monkland, LKSJames GemmellArchd McNeilCollier14Falling from part way downFell from a mid-working. He had been allowed to act as bottomer for his grandfather, who had not come out that morning 
1880October26Blairhall No 1Culross, PERLochgelly Iron & Coal Co LtdThos. CantEngineman--Boilers burstingSee report

From Main body of report:
There was a steam boiler exploded at Valley Field Colliery, near Dunfermline, by which one man, the engineman, was killed. The accident happened about 5 o'clock in the morning while he was raising steam to begin work at seven. The only other person present was a tramp who escaped unhurt. He heard the engineman on the top of the boiler when it exploded. It was a Cornish boiler and was one of a range of four which had been at work for ten years at a pressure of 40lb on the square inch, and it appeared to have given way solely from weakness, the outside shell for a distance of 10 feet, near the wall on which it rested, having been reduced by corrosion from the original thickness of 7/16 inch to a thickness varying from 1/8 to 1/16 inch. It did not appear to have been regularly examined, for the flues around the outside shell of the boiler had been very dirty, and the drainage so bad that occasionally water lay along the outside shell where it rested on the mid-wall, and this water and damp had corroded the plates for the distance stated. The machinery and plant were being removed and in less than a fortnight there would have been no steam needed.
1880October28Southfield No 1Slamannan, STIWm Black & SonsJane WinningPit head worker--Falling into shaft from surfaceRan a hutch into pit when cage was not there. There was a gate, in terms of General Rule 14, which she had not fastened up. 
1880November11WestfieldWest CalderWm Baird & CoJohn HaydenMiner--  Fall of limestone at face 
1880November12SandlodgeShetlandSumburgh Mining Co LtdMat. TullochMiner--  Crushed by a pump-rod while passing under it 
1880November15HillDalserf, LKSMcLean, Dalzell & CoJohn WardropCollier21Falls of roofAt face. Stooping 
1880November22ShawfieldCarluke, LKSJohn WilsonJames AllanCollier14Miscellaneous underground- on inclined planesCrushed by bogie and tubs on endless rope incline 
1880November25Greenfield No 1Hamilton, LKSHamilton Coal CoThos. WyperDrawer15Falls of roofOn drawing road 
1880November26LoanheadLasswade, EdinburghShotts Iron CoMich. DonnachyDrawer16Falling from part way downFell from a level onto the incline. Edge seam 
1880November29Blantyre No 3 SplintBlantyre. LKSWm Dixon LtdJames NeilsonBrusher50Falls of roofIn a road while redding a fall 
1880November26GrangemouthGrangemouth, STIGrangemouth Coal CoPeter BennetWagoner50On surface – miscellaneousJammed between wagons 
1880December3SpringsideDreghornA Kenneth & SonThomas MackieCollier21In coal minesFall of coal 
1880December4PenicuikPenicuik, EdinburghShotts Iron CoAlex CairnsMiner36In ironstone minesFell down a steep travelling way while building the sides. Edge seam, angle 58 degrees. Long wall 
1880December6Addiewell No 2West Calder, EdinburghYoungs Paraffin Light and Mineral Oil Co LtdHugh LawlorTrimmer21In shale minesStruck by a train of empty wagons which were passing the screens 
1880December15Hartwoodhill    David Neil    Not listed Death not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper report
1880December15Craigneuk    James Rox    Not listed Death not listed in Inspectors reportNewspaper report
1880December19Muiredge No 1Leven, FIFBowman and CoJames BraidReddsman--In shafts – ropes and chains breakingBreakage of wire rope. It was supposed that the rope went off the pulley and the fall of the cage, about 13 feet, snapped the rope where it struck the axle. It was a very stormy morning with snow falling heavily at the time. 
James Mathesonreddsman--
1880December21GarriongillCambusnethan, LKSColtness Iron CoPat WilsonLabourer19On surface – miscellaneousRun over by a wagon while attempting to sprag it 
1880December21Portland No 8HurlfordEglinton Iron CoWm GrayCollier38In coal minesFall of coal 
1880December25Craighead No 2Blantyre. LKSWm Baird & CoHenry GardnerBrusher--Miscellaneous underground- explosions of gunpowderStruck with stones from a shot 
1880December27StonelawRutherglenF R ReidJohn YuileCollier52In coal minesFall of roof 

Last Updated 17th November 2012