Continuing a look at former Auchentibber resident Flora Dickson Potter’s Memoirs and research of the area. Kindly shared here by Janet Cochrane. In Flora’s words and continued from previous parts 1 and 2:
“By the 1870’s coal mining and stone quarrying were the chief occupations of the Auchentibber men. Miners worked at the Blantyre Collieries of William Dixon and Company, where Scotland’s worst mining disaster took place in 1877, at Merry & Cunninghame’s at Auchinraith or at Colin Dunlop’s collieries at Craigmuir and Park. Other miners travelled to Udston Colliery near Hamilton, where fatalities also occurred through explosions of gas. These collieries depended a great deal on the export trade and this dried up in 1914 when war broke out. Production never really increased after the war was over and by 1930 most of the deep mines in the area had been closed. The stone quarries too were little in demand at that time but even as late as 1950, some quarry men were employed. The village had its highest population figure in 1904 – 1952, but when mining ceased to give employment it dipped below a hundred.
Housing in the vicinity had increased rapidly when the mines were active and often the conditions under which the people lived were unsatisfactory. Sanitation was poor and overcrowding was quite common. By 1928, attempts were made to rehouse families from ‘human pig sites with the most filthy and impure surroundings’ into clean, new homes in Blantyre. By 1930, Auchentibber was a derelict village but some inhabitants struggled on. In 1934, a demolition order was served on the 18 houses in the Clyde Row. Those in the other large area of Collier’s homes – Craig Row mostly already had gone. The Lanarkshire County Council had been reluctant to invest in new sewers and running water and consequently many houses fell below tolerable, modern standards and were condemned.”
Pictured is Clyde Row in the early 1900’s, shared by Gordon Cook.
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