Strang Accident in Priory Pit, 1901

On Monday 12th August 1901, about 7.30am, a young man named Thomas Strang (19) met with a shocking accident whilst working in the Priory Pit, Blantyre.

Accidents in Blantyre’s pits were not uncommon. Thomas lived with his parents near to the colliery at Priory Rows. (where the Priory Playing fields are today). Strang was a driver, employed by Messrs Baird & Co (Coalmasters). He was taking loaded hutches down a slight incline when it is supposed, he must have slipped.

The oversman was attracted to the spot by Thomas’s cries of help and when found he was tightly jammed between the first hutch and the ground. He was removed by other workers with all speed and carried to his home which was nearby to the pithead. When Dr McNicol arrived, it was determined Thomas had suffered a broken left leg in two places and three of his ribs broken besides other internal injuries and bruises. In considerable pain, it was advised he should be in hospital and was immediately taken to Glasgow Royal Infirmary.

I’ve unfortunately heard many stories about mining accidents, where the outcome was broken bones and of course much worse. It got me thinking again about those times where there was no or little insurance and what would happen to miners when they suffered forced downtime through injury. No pay? Very little injury or sick pay, in times when it was hard enough to make ends meet.

Leave a Reply