The Albion Coal Mines

H. C. Hovey
1881 Scientific American  
amination of the works abQve ground. In doing so I had bur"t in at his back dO{lr. He rushed out the front door and The series of startling disasters by which these famous the company of Mr. Gilpin and Mr. Joseph Hudson (the son fell on his face. His oil· soaked garments instantly caught mines have lately been overwhelmed with loss, and perhaps of the superintendent). They showed me the old engine fire, and though by his own efforts and th!! aid of others he with utter ruin, serves to recall a
more » ... serves to recall a memorable visit I made to "Hercules," the first locomotive run on any railroad in finally extinguished them, it was not until he was so basly the"e same colli eries only three months ago. They are worth British America. It was still in use; and the man who ran burned as to be beyond recovery. describing, independently of the painful interest awakened it on its trial trip, so long ago, is still employed by the com-My guide and I traveled around in the mine for what he by recent distressing events. I pany. A du plicate engine of the same age, called the" Sam-said was about six miles; finding, of course, considerable The Albion Mines are located in Pictou County, in the son," stood on a side track near by, in good repair and daily sameness of scenery, yet seeing many things novel to one pf()vince of Nova Scotia, about 100 miles north of Halifax, use. In proximity to these antiquated affairs was one of the more used to exploring natural caverns than such artificial and one mile from the village of Stellarton. The entire coal latest and most highly improved English locomotives; the excavations. My main anxiety was to keep frJm being run field of the province, so far as explored, occupies an area of contrast furnishing an instructive object lesson in the pro-over by the horses which went at full trot through the dark· about 685 square miles; but the portion lying in Picton gress of modern mechanism. ness as fearlessly as if above ground. Their stables were COllnty is a basin by itself, irregular in form, inclosed by We found the patriarchal engineer himself at his post of below, but extensive and comfortable; and the horses were much ohier geological formations, and covers only some 35 duty in the pump house, running the gigantic steam pump seldom taken to the surface. except in case of sickne8s, till square miles. Although thus limited in extent, as compared by whose powerrul strokes a volume of water is continually they died. At the time of tlle explo�;jon 17 horseswerefound with other fields, it possesses great value on account of the discharged as large as a man's body. The buckets, about dead iu their stalls. Suffice it to say that our trip was with·
doi:10.1038/scientificamerican01081881-20 fatcat:c2mbtvklzfdpbpndrnpzyzd6z4