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New local history books in store now!

Exciting news today as we have taken stock of four local history books, all relating to mining in the region.  They are all NEW copies, not secondhand,  but more than worth the price.  There is a limited stock at present so make sure you grab your copy before they are all gone.



Glen Davis: a Shale Oil Ghost Town and its people 1938-1954: Leonie Knapman, 2010.

Halstead Press. H/cover, A4 270 gloss pages, over 400 photos.


When the Glen Davis shale oil undertaking closed for good in 1954 it left a lingering nostalgia for what might have been. This was an ambitious scheme to reduce Australia’s vulnerability to the vagaries of world oil supplies in the years leading up to WW11. History would show that the adventure at Glen Davis to help make Australia at least partially self sufficient in meeting demands for petroleum products was doomed from the start. Government and union interference were key factors in the demise of this under taking that filled such a vital page in the region’s – and the nations – industrial history.



Tylsdesley: the village that disappeared. Ray Christison, 2009.

City of Greater Lithgow Mining Museum, A4, 139 pp, 76 photographs and 13 maps and plans.


The spine of the Great Dividing Range running north from Lithgow and Wallerawang contains rich pockets of coal. Exploitation of these deposits commenced after construction of a railway line through this region from 1880. Mining commenced at Cullen Bullen in 1889 and continued in this locality for 70 years. This book tells the story of the Tyldesley Colliery that operated west of Cullen Bullen from 1904 and the village that developed around the colliery tunnel mouth.



A Pictorial History of the Lithgow State Coal Mine: Ray Christison, 2009. 

City of Greater Lithgow Mining Museum. A4, 124 pp, over 110 images in black & white and colour.


Available from the City of Greater Lithgow Mining Museum Inc, PO Box 617, Lithgow NSW 2790.  All proceeds from the sale of the book will go towards the continued operation and development of the State Mine Museum. It contains many stories of the Lithgow State Coal Mine and its employees.



A Light in the Vale. Development of the Lithgow District Miners’ Mutual Protective Association. 1875-1900:              Ray Christison 2011 

City of Greater Lithgow Mining Museum. A4, 122 pp


A Light in the Vale records the development of trade unionism among the coal and shale miners of the New South Wales Western Coalfield between 1875 and 1900. Faced with what they regarded as intolerable working conditions the miners of the Vale of Clwydd Colliery formed an association for their mutual protection in 1878. They achieved some early successes but their union was forced out of existence by 1881. By the mid 1880s the region’s miners had formed a district union, which successfully weathered the economic and industrial storms of the 1890s. The organisation entered the 20th century ready to become an active player in a developing national miners’ union.  It includes brief biographies of the union’s leaders, including Joseph Cook who became Prime Minister of Australia in 1913.


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