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Mining for coal in Victorian times
  A young child killed in a coalmine

Among the old records of the Quarter Sessions for Breconshire there are claims for expenses sent to the court by coroners, who were officials who examined cases of accidental deaths.

This example shows that in 1843 a little boy of only four and a half years old was killed in a 'coal pit' at Cwmtwrch.

bill for

Quarter Sessions entry

The document is dated 5th January 1843 and it reads:
"To Henry Maybery, Coroner
5th - Inquest on the Body of a child named William Butler 4 and a half years old who was killed in a Coal Pit by a large piece of coal falling upon him at Cwmtwrch in Ystradgynlais...."

It is probable that this little boy was with his father at the time. The usual system was for the miner to be paid for the amount of good coal he produced. Many would bring their children into the mine with them to help with loading and sorting the coal, so that there would be more money for the family.

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