History of Coal Mining in Nova Scotia
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Louis Frost
Bye Pits

The Louis Frost Notes 1685 to 1962


MacGregor Slope (Abandoned)

The slope was located at Stellarton to work the MacGregor and Fleming seams overlying the Albion Colliery. The output from both mines was handled by a bankhead common to both slopes.

The mine was opened in the year 1880 and continued in operation until 1921 when the colliery was closed to permit the overhead workings in the Albion Mine to be advanced sufficiently to permit the extraction of the MacGregor.

In order to maintain the output from the Albion district, the colliery was reopened in 1928 and continued in steady operation until 1957, when the colliery was finally closed due to a fire in the underlying Acadia, No. 1 Seam which was worked through cross-measure tunnels near the foot of the MacGregor slope.

Prior to the closure of the Colliery, practically all the workable coal had been recovered from all the seams worked by this slope.

The coal was of good quality and suitable for domestic and steam raising purposes.

The MacGregor Seam ranged in thickness from 12 to 20 feet and the overlying Fleming Seam 7 feet in thickness, separated by a band of stone 5 feet thick.

At the bottom of the basin at the foot of the slope, which was 4830 ft. long, these two came together to give a total thickness of 24 ft. of coal. To the west of the slopes the seams thin and deteriorate in quality.

The Acadia No. 1 Seam, which was worked near the foot of the slope, was 7 feet thick.

The method of mining prior to 1929 was room and pillar in all three seams. Thereafter the method of mining where conditions were suitable, was longwall advancing.

Where the pitch of the seam was suitable, flat sheets were used to slide the coal into mine cars on the level, the coal having been undercut by air driven longwall coal cutters. Shaker conveyors were used on the flatter inclination. The coal was bored by jackhammers.

The operations were carried on at an average depth of 1546 feet, with a maximum cover of 1720 feet. When the colliery closed on February 5th, 1957, the cover over the Acadia No. 1 workings was 1661 feet. The average temperature underground was 56 degrees wet bulb and 58 degrees dry bulb.

The mine cars were of one-ton capacity and were delivered to the main slope by air driven rope haulages. An interesting feature of the main slope was the operation of a three-rail system of haulage.

Water from the Albion workings and the Acadia workings was drained into the MacGregor through boreholes. The total make of water amounted to 190 gallons per minute. This was pumped to the surface by electrically driven pumps against a static head of 1490 feet.

The mine was gassy and 65,000 cubic feet of air against a water gauge of 6.5 inches was circulated through the mine.


The hoist for this mine was electrically driven and the cars were hoisted to the surface and passed through common screening plant at the Albion Colliery.

In January, 1952, an explosion occurred in a section of the mine known as the Borehole Balance, resulting in the death of nineteen workmen and officials. The cause was not definitely determined, but it was assumed to be the result of spontaneous combustion caused by oily waste left in the old workings.

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Last Modified: 98-03-21

Authored by: Louis Frost

The information contained on this site is not provided for the purpose of factual
representation. Instead, it is provided in an historical context. Every effort has
been made to ensure that this information represents the actual content of the
original document authored by Louis Frost for the Dominion Coal Company
on or around 1962. Nevertheless, no warranties are provided in any respect.

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