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Vancouver Coal Company

As part of the Chinese Historical Wrongs Legacy Initiative, we’ve digitized a small selection of inquests and inquiries from 1872 to 1934, found in series GR-0431. These were chosen to reflect the experiences of early Chinese immigrants to B.C. – their living and working conditions, and their unfortunate accidental or unusual deaths.   They range from a woman working in a brothel in Barkerville who died of natural causes to three sawmill workers who died from malnutrition. Learn more.

*All transcriptions are provided by volunteers, and the accuracy of the transcriptions is not guaranteed. Please be sure to verify the information by viewing the image record, or visiting the BC Archives in person. 

BC Archives GR-0431

*Please note that archival source materials are original historical documents that have not been censored, reviewed or otherwise altered by the Royal BC Museum. Some materials may contain content that is racist, sexist or otherwise offensive. The Royal BC Museum is only the custodian of archival materials; the content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Royal BC Museum.

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Down at the face

To Mr Drake Q.C - I worked in the south of England in three or four different mines before I came here. In some of them they work with safety lamps and in others they did not. In this mine here as long as the air kept travelling it was safe enough. There was no cross cut in my stall. I have worked up at the roof of my stall but found no gas there; I have no idea as to the cause of this explosion. There appeared to be the usual quantity of air on the third of May. I have been down [?] in the mine [?] that day but not exactly with an exploring party. I went down in the [?] [?] with the exploring party to get my tools in my stall. A good deal of coal had fallen and there was [?] in there like in the other places. I found my tools in my stall. I could not [?] [?] of or form any idea of the evidence of the explosion from what I saw there. I did not [?] whether [?] were blown out or not. To Mr Young - I do not know of anyone having been burned in that diagonal slope. I could not say exactly to a day as to when the dust was last watered but it was very shortly before the explosion

I take upon oath and [?] this 25th day of May in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and eighty seven before me.

BC Archives, GR-0431 Box 4 File 3 / BRITISH COLUMBIA. ATTORNEY GENERAL. / Inquisitions / inquests conducted by coroners in British Columbia.

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