I have collected a lot of information about this tragic event over the years. I had intended to put together a decent article about the subject but never seem to have the time. So I am just going to post a few bits and bods just now given that we have started this thread.
The Victoria pit was in the Nitshill and Craigbank areas of modern glasgow, originally in renfrewshire for anyone who may wish to look further. In a book by McWhirter James Mine ain grey toon the story of Barrhead
he identifies that mining for coal had been going on circ.12?? at Hurlet for the monks of Paisley Abbey.
The Nitshill Mine known as the Victoria was a much later venture by the Coats family of Paisley thread fame, On the morning of 15th March 1851 there was a massive explosion at the pit which killed 61 men, this dispite the fact that the ventilation system in the mine was reckoned to be the most advanstanced in existance at the time, the company had plans to exhibit a model of the system at the Great Exhibition at Crystal Palace, to demonstrate how good it was. This idea was dropped following the explosion.
Tragic as the disaster was, the fact that irritates me most is this. At the time 1851, this was the largest mining disaster ever in Scotland and possibly the uk and no effort was made to commemorate this in the local area.
This was rectified by a memorial next to Nitshill War Memorial placed there by Glasgow District Council, following much local effort and donations from the local traders, trade unions, the local community and the council.
I have added a few images taken from the Illistrated London News in April 1851 and a few very bad pics of the modern memorial.
Nitshill in 1851:
The Funeral of the miners at St. Johns RC in Barrhead:
The Modern Memorial erected 199?
And close up:
and just for good measure, The Nitshill War Memorial:
Map of Colliery Feb 1851:
Comming Soon if I can manage to stick the 3 bits onto one pic!!!!!!!!