Pictured here in 1957 is Priestfield Terrace, High Blantyre. These miners homes were likely constructed at the same time as Dixons Pits 1 and 2 opened. The 1881 census for Priestfield Terrace gives a real detailed insight into who lived there, quite possibly amongst the first families to take up residence at Priestfield Terrace or perhaps the second families if the widows of miners killed in the earlier explosion had been evicted?!
The census does show that full families were living there in those small homes and it would have been a real busy place. I can only imagine how these people must have been affected by such a monumental pit explosion and scale of death , just 4 years earlier, right outside their homes in 1877.
From North to South, the houses were occupied in 1881 by 83 people, named here as:
1. James Howie,31, Coal Miner. Wife Janet lived with him.
2. Uninhabited house
3. William MacGregor, 26, Pit Fireman. Wife Mary, Annie Sister, 2 daughters and 2 sons.
4. George Watt, 38, Coal Miner. Wife Mary, 1 daughter and 5 sons.
5. Uninhabited house
6. William Paterson, 45, Coal miner. Wife Elizabeth and 3 daughters.
7. William McMillan, 48, Underground fireman. Wife Mary and son.
8. Thomas Robertson, 47, Pit Fireman. Wife Mary and 1 son, 1 daughter and boarder.
9. John McKinlay, 44, Coal miner. Wife Jane, 3 daughters and a son.
10. Thomas Scobie, 31, Colliery Oversman. Wife Jane, 2 daughters and son.
11. William Brown 27, Colliery Oversman. Wife Rose, 2 daughters and son.
12. Thomas Forrest, 33, Joiner. Wife Janet, 2 sons and a daughter.
13. John White, 42, Colliery Oversman. Wife Ann, 4 sons, a daughter, nephew and mother in law.
14. William Miller, 46, Engine Keeper. Wife Mary, 3 sons and 3 daughters.
15. Donald Morrison, 42, Playelayer. Wife Jane, 4 sons and daughter.
16. James Paterson, 36, Colliery Engineer. Wife Sarah and 4 sons.