March 2006

Scottish Mining Museum

There are no more collieries in Scotland, the last one closing 2 years ago, but this site in Newtongrange was a working mine for almost 100 years. The museum details the origins of coal and the history of mining in Scotland, including the mining towns and 20th century strikes. Newtongrange was actually a company-built town with rows of model homes. You can then go into the area where the coal came up from the pit, down into a tunnel itself with its huge drill, into the area where they washed the coal, and to the stream-driven engine that moved the 60-person cage that took men 1600 feet into the mine.

1-ton coal cars
One ton coal cars, each numbered for the man who dug it out

The pit
The cage into the pit

Tippler
The tippler that dumped the car

engine
Coal car engine

 

Cage engine
Steam-driven engine that powered the cage going into the mine
tower

City Art Centre

This month the City Art Centre has an exhibit celebrating the 200th anniversary of the birth of Hans Christian Andersen (in English and Danish). There are letters, manuscripts, his suitcase, and numerous papercuts he made in addition to many activities for kids and short cartoon videos of many of his stories that were tied to his life. It was an ingenious method to keep kids occupied, and most were fun, too.

Mansfield Traquair Centre

I didn't have my camera along for this one, but it is worth checking out the website that includes a picture gallery (click on the picture frame). This is a former Catholic Apostolic church that was recently rescued from ruin and restored. It's only a few blocks from my house and only open one afternoon a month. The murals in it were painted by Phoebe Ann Traquair who has done other murals around the city. She was part of the Arts and Crafts movement at the end of the 1800s. There is a definite similarity between her work and some of what you see in Glasgow. The church group itself is interesting is that it no longer exists because they believed the end of the world was coming so they did not set up a way to replace the church elders and priests so they all just eventually died out.

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Last updated: 05-Apr-2006