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Grant, R. D.
Clutha Coal
First International and Eighth Australian Engineering Heritage Conference 1996: Shaping Our Future; Proceedings
Institution of Engineers, Australia, Barton, Australian Capital Territory, 1996, pp. 137-143

The paper describes the Lewis Coal Mine and its attendant railway near Coal Point, South Otago, New Zealand. The mine, the earliest underground mine in New Zealand, dates from 1860 while the Government-owned horse railway antedates the Dun Mountain Railway, often claimed as New Zealand's first. The development of the mine on traditional Coalbrookdale lines by ex Shropshire mine manager, James G Lewis, was fraught with difficulties both natural and man made; remoteness, difficult ground conditions, misappropriation of funds, then a gold rush deprived the mine of labour and ships with which to carry the coal. The mine produced for a few years, but as better quality coal seams were discovered and worked in the neighbourhood, demand fell and the mine was abandoned. The Kaitangata coal field, of which it was the pioneer mine, supplied much of the South Island's coal requirements for the next 90 years.

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