Sunday, October 29, 2006

History of Coal Mining

Having reviewed both of my mother's grandmothers' genealogies. One striking pattern emerges, which is that ALL of the males so far have been coal miners.

My nan's mother's family were miners in North-East England, moving to-and-forth between Durham, Northumberland and Cumberland, probably where there was work.

My grandad's mother's family were miners in the Black Country, concentrated in West Bromwich, though after 1900 they moved to Catleford, West Yorkshire.

I thought it may be of interest for people to read about what mining was like in 1800-1900 England. Rather than me repeat what others have written, I recommend the following links:

  • Description of a 19th Century Miner's Daily Life
  • Great information and archive material for Durham mining
  • Durham Mining Museum
  • Some Staffordshire Mining History
  • West Bromwich Mining History (scroll down page)
  • Background information on West Bromwich
  • Brief Black Country History
  • Lots of UK coal mining history
  • 'Down the Mine' - Essay by George Orwell
  • List of Individuals who died in Durham Mining Accidents
  • List of Mining Occupations

  • Within the pages of the websites linked above there are many books on the subject.

    For a more academic approach, the following paper may be of interest:

    Dov Friedlander, "Occupational Structure, Wages, and Migration in Late Nineteenth-Century England and Wales", Economic Development and Cultural Change, Vol. 40, No. 2. (Jan., 1992), pp. 295-318.

    This is a picture of a Northumberland Miner and his family, taken from the site of the first link of this post

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