Another bite sized chunk of Blantyre History
Getting back to the streets! I should really have started with Springwell as it is the foremost point of reference when you enter into Blantyre from the East. The village next door which is basically a continuation of both is called Burnbank. Baird’s Rows follows after Springwell.
Springwell was a division or scheme of Council Houses put up in the 1930s which the local council allowed you to live in at what was considered a decent rental. Today these same council houses are selling for thousands of pounds inSpringwell. The council of Lanarkshire had a few good reasons for putting up these council houses, decent living and modernization in its day, but I think it was more for trying to break the hold that the owners of the mines had over our forefathers, places like where your Grandad lived Baird’s Rows. My family and all of our relations were miners, there was nothing else after the mills closed down in Blantyre and most of them worked in mines and lived in Miners Rows, and even up to the late 1930 shortly before the war a control of sorts was still being felt in their every day lives. There were at least six miners Rows of houses in low and high Blantyre. This was a Serfdom.
The street your Grandfather lived on Springwell Terrace, by its name had to be a part of the Springwell region very close to the Auchinraith Mine owned by Merry’s and Cunningham. There was a rather long street in its day called Auchinraith Road (and still is) which ran from the main street of Blantyre up to High Blantyre Main Street, this ran parallel with the railway line which brought the coal from the East Kilbride area to join up at the Auchinraith junction, which in turn met up with the railway line I have spoken about it in previous Email. The Craighead junction close to Baird’s Rows and Craighead signal box where your grandfather met his death. This was a very very busy set of railway crossings in them there days. Today all are gone.
The Auchinraith pit that I am discussing is the same pit that a young relation of mine was killed, while he too was crossing the railway line to go to work. Any sign of the pit and bing (Underground refuse dug out with the coal and separated from the coal by women and boys) are all gone.
Continuing the conversation between Thomas Dunsmuir Hartman in Chicago, formerly Logan Street, (known as TDH or Drapadew) and Margaret in Queensland Australia on TalkingScot.
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