GLOSSARY OF MINING TERMS(H)

Hack, a heavy pick used in shaft sinking or for breaking stone.

Hade, The angle made by the line of a fault with the vertical: paradoxically, when this angle approaches 90° the fault is said to be one having a ‘low hade’.

Hag, to hag, to cut with an axe, or to bring down the coal with a pick. (Scot.).

Half bar or Split bar, a long prop split down the middle used with props or dowties as roof supports. Also called ‘Planks’.(N.East).

Half course, a road driven in seam at an angle of about 45º to the full dip.

Half-edge seam, a highly inclined seam of coal. Hence the term ‘cutting half-edge’ meaning cutting on a steep incline. (Scot.). - see also Rearing seams.

Half heading system, a method of ripping at the end of a longwall advancing face in which the line of the rib side of the face working coincides with the centreline of the gate being driven, following the face. Half of the cross sectional area of the ripping adjacent to the face resembles a normal ripping while the other half resembles a solid heading.

Halfmarrows, young putters. –see also Foal. (N.East).

Hambone, -see ‘Fork’.

Hand-filled, to fill coal using a shovel on to a face conveyor as opposed to machine-loading; or to separate the large from the small coals in the mine and fill them by hand into a tub or corf etc. Also alled ‘handgot’.

Hand gears, a hand-operated windlass, used at the beginning of a shaft sinking or to wind coal from a shallow mine shaft. (S.Staffs.).

Handgot, -see Hand-filled.

Hang or Hing, the lie or hade of a fault. (Bris.); or a slope or an incline. (Scot.).

Hanging coal, undercut coal that fails to fall.

Hards, coals of a hard and closed-grained character. (Mids.); or the name given to large pieces of best quality coal. (Som.).

Hard binds, -see Blackband ironstones.

Hard heading, -see Stone drift.

Hardstop, cement- like material for sealing stoppings.

Harmonic extraction, the working of one or more coal seams by means of a special layout and time sequence of extraction to minimise the effects of subsidence at the surface.

Harotz or harrotz, a bed of hard coal in the Top Hard (Worksop Area); sometimes a term for dirty fusain.

Harp, a cross between a shovel and a fork. The blade of the shovel was cut away to leave a series of slots to allow the small coal and slack to fall through to be left in the mine. Also known as a Branded shovel, or to fill a hutch with coal at the face using a harp. (Scot.).

Harrie or Herrie, to rob pillars. To load the loose coal that had come down due to the action of weighting or to take a strip of coal without taking the whole pillar. This was an easy way of winning coal but dangerous by taking away support for the roof. (Scot.). - see also Lameskirting and Pillar robbing.

Hasson or Hassing, a vertical gutter between the water rings or garlands in a shaft, which carried the water down the shaft to the sump. Also called the ‘gauton’. (Scot.).

Hatchens, rise roadways from the main levels. (Som.).

Hatching, a method of working a steeply inclined thin seam - see Topple, or a self-acting haulage incline in a thin seam. (Bris.).

Hat rollers, cast iron or steel rollers shaped like a hat, revolving on a vertical pin for guiding haulage ropes round curves.

Haulage, the transportation of men or materials from one place to another; or a powered system for transporting tubs, usually involving a rope, track and an engine.

Haulage engine, an engine employed to move coal, men and material along the haulage roadways in a mine.

Haunt, the coal trade carried out at the pit head. The term was said to have originated when customers used to come and haunt the pit until they could be supplied. (Som.). - see also Coal hill and Landsale.

Hazel or Hazle. In some mining areas ‘hazel’ was an old mining term for sandstone. It was also another name for the roof or top directly above a coal seam.

Head or Heading, a roadway, generally in a coal seam; or to excavate a roadway or narrow passage; or ‘head out’, to outcrop.

Headers, miners who are engaged in the drivage of new roadways underground.

Head coal, an old term for the band of coal next to the roof; or the upper section of a thick seam that was worked in two or more lifts; or the top coal on a loaded wagon. (Scot.).

Headgear. Headstocks, Headsticks or Headframe, the head frame of a mine shaft supporting the winding wheels (pulleys). The term may also include all the raised structure around the shaft, which is used for loading and unloading cages. Also called the ‘pithead gear’.

Headroom, the height between the floor and the roof in a roadway.

Headsman, a lad who was not strong enough alone to put, but able to do so with the assistance of a small boy, called a ‘foal’. (N.East).

Head out, to outcrop.

Head piece, the top, horizontal wooden bar in a set of roadway supports. Two vertical posts or props comprising the other components. Also called a ‘collar’.

Head tree, a piece of a crown-tree, a foot long or so, placed upon a prop to support the roof.

Heading, another name for a tunnel or roadway.

Heads, - see heading.

Head-way, a method of working. A roadway driven parallel to the cleat of the coal. Also called ‘walls’ and ‘narrows’. –see also Endways; or a heading driven at right angles to the strike of the seam. (N.East); or a pair of narrow drifts driven into the solid coal.

Headways, When a pair of roadways are driven for exploring or winning the coal, they are called exploring or winning headways, the principal of which is called the fore-headways, and the other the back-headways. (N.East).

Headways course, a line of walls or holings extending from side to side of a panel of boards. (N.East).

Headways face, -see End face. Heap, the pit heap. The colliery waste tip. - see also Bing.

Heapstead, the entire surface works about a colliery shaft including the headgear, loading and screening plant, winding and pumping engines etc. with their respective buildings.

Heatings, outbreaks of spontaneous combustion. Also fires in the waste or gob. (Mids.).

Heave, when the floor of a roadway rises due to floor weight. Also called ‘lift’.-see also Creep, Floor-weight and Floor lift.

Heaver, a coal cutter or hewer.

Heft, another name for weight. (Som.).

Herefords, a term used at Birch Coppice and Desford Collieries, S.Mids. for the men of the on-coming shift, a reference to their white faces.

Herring-bone timbering, two half height props with two additional props above set at an angle inclined inwards, connected to a central longitudinal bar in the roof; or the latter without the half height props, the inclined props or struts being notched into the strong sides of the roadway.

Heughs or Heuchs, an ancient Scottish term for coal seams or coal workings.

Hewer. A hewer was a man, usually between the ages of 17 and 70, whose job it was to break down the coal, sometimes called ‘ragging’, ready for the filler to load the tubs. His job would include undercutting the coal by means of a hand held pick before the advent of mechanical coalcutters. Also known as a ‘collier’, ‘coal face worker’, ‘getter’, ‘heaver’ or ‘pickman’.

Hewing, the action of breaking down the coal using a hammer and wedges or a pick, to ‘hew’ the coal.

Hill, an inclined roadway in the mine. (Mids.), (N.East); or the surface area at a colliery. (Scot.).

Hill clerk, the person who weighed the coals for sale, either at the colliery or at a depot away from the colliery. (Scot.).

Hill sale, the sale of coal at the colliery from the coal hill. In carts, as opposed to coal being sent out by rail. (Scot.).

Hillsman or Hillman, the pitheadsman, or a coal salesman. (Scot.).

Hill system, a system of working coal where the seams lie close together and where three or more are worked simultaneously by longwall. (S.Staffs.); or a system of working rearing coal seams.

Hipped, another word to describe a ‘stepped’ face.

Hitch, a fault of equal or less throw or displacement than the thickness of the seam in which it occurs, also called a ‘fault’ or a ‘trouble’; or to attach trams to a haulage rope with a short chain.

Hitcher, another name for the onsetter, also known as a ‘hooker’.

Hobs, pillars of coal to support the roof. (Lancs.).

Hod, a cart or sled for transporting coal in thin seams. (F.of D.).

Hoe, a pick with which the breaker cuts the coal. - see also Mattock. (Som.).

Hog back, a sharp rise in the floor of a coal seam.

Hogger piece, a branch pipe at the top of a ‘pump tree’ for delivering the water.

Hoggers, stockings without feet, chiefly used by the barrow-men or putters. (N.East).

Hole, to undercut or overcut the coal, by hand or machine, ready for breaking down the main body of coal; or to break through into another working, i.e. to hole through.

Hold out. This was shouted by the banksman to the bottomer when a bant of men were about to descend the shaft to let him know that he was not to send up a load of coal against the bant, only the empty rope or chain, in order to avoid an accident by a collision known as a ‘wedding’.

Hole-out, to under-cut the coal. (Leics).

Hole the old man, to break through into a section of old workings. The old workings were known as ‘the old man’. –see Hole.

Holing, the wedge-shaped section of a seam or floor removed from beneath the coal before it was broken down. Sometimes the holing was made in the top of the seam, other times in or about the middle.- see also Bannocking, Kirving and Binching; or when one working place met another, the opening was termed the holing and the one was said to have ‘holed’ into the other; or a short passage connecting two roads.

Holing about, the first operation is to get an air current between the down-cast and up-cast shafts once the coal has been reached. (N.East).

Holing dirt, A soft layer lying beneath, immediately above, or in the seam itself, which is worked out by the collier with his pick so that the coal itself can be more easily obtained.

Holing clod, bed of clod in which shotholes are drilled, (Yorks.).

Holing nog, a short length of timber used to support the coalface when undercutting. –see also Nog

Hollows, old abandoned workings.

Homotropal ventilation, ventilation by a current of air travelling in the same direction as the flow of coal out of the mine. The opposite is ‘antitropal ventilation’.

Hoo, inferior cannel coal.

Hooker, a small length of chain with a spring loaded hook. The hooker was clipped to the chain on the end of the winding rope. A man would pass his leg through the hooker and hang onto the main chain. A number of men would ride the shaft in this way hanging on the end the rope. (Som.). - see also Bant and Foaly bant. Also another name for ‘onsetter’.

Hooker-on or lasher-on, a haulage hand. One who actually attaches the tubs to the haulage rope with a clip or a lashing on chain, or ‘Hooker-on’ was also an alternative name for the onsetter and probably comes from the days when his job was to hook the corves or hutches to the rope. (Scot.).

Hoppit or Hoppet, - see also Bowk, Bucket, Kibble (sinking bucket), used in shaft sinking.

Horizon, a level or nearly level main underground roadway, often equipped with locomotive haulage.

Horizon mining, a system of working inclined seams from nearly level crosscuts and laterals, repeated at certain vertical intervals or horizons.

Horned danny, a tram or tub without solid sides or ends. Used to transport materials of any length such as rails, water pipes, long props etc. The upright iron bars that held the material on the tram constituted the horns. (Mids.). Also called a horney tram, - see also Danny.

Horse, a natural channel cut or washed away by water in a coal seam, replaced by shale or sandstone; or a bank or ridge of foreign matter in a coal seam; or an old shoe or clog sole that was use for sliding down the rail on a steep inclined road. (Lancs.).

Horse whim, a later development of the cog and rung gin, introduced at about the end of the 17th century and was constructed of a horizontal drum working on a vertical shaft or spindle, located away from the shaft. This drum was also rotated by a horse trotting around a circle. The ropes that coiled on the winding drum passed over pulleys mounted on a crude headgear over the winding shaft. This permitted the use of a larger drum and increased speed of winding.

Horseback, -see Washout.

Horse engine, Horse whim or Horse gin, a winding apparatus powered by a horse.

Horse fettler, -see Ostler.

Horsehead, a box opened at one end attached to pipes or wooden tubbing at the surface, used for ventilating the mine. The horsehead shaped box would be kept facing into the wind; or a ‘forepole’, two steel girders suspended from previously set girders on hangers, they are pushed forward to provide temporary protection until permanent supports are set.

Horse tree, a strong timber beam used to support pumps in a shaft.

Housters, the heavy, stony residue, after shale has been burnt. (N.Staffs.).

Hovel, a cabin at the surface for the use of the banksman. (S.Staffs.).

Howdie horse, a pit horse kept on the pit top for use in an emergency. (N.East).

Howk, to hew, to break down coal with a pick. (Scot.).

Howway, call to lower the cage down the shaft. (N.East).

Hubbs, mixed blacks, inferior coal and cannel, with shells, in the Adwalton Stone Coal, (Yorks.).

Hudge, a small box or tram without wheels running on timber slides which was drawn by a boy in thin and steep seams. (Som.); or a large iron barrel with a semi-circular iron bow on top which hooked onto the winding rope. The hudge held between 10 and 20cwt. - see Bowk.

Huffing, floor weight. (Lancs.).

Hunting coal, the ribs and posts of coal left to be worked at a later date. (Yorks.).

Hurdle sheet or Screen, a brattice with a space left at the top, hung across a roadway to divert the air current upwards to clear gas from a hole in the roof. Also called a ‘jump sheet’.

Hurley, a hutch or tram. (Scot.).

Hurrier/s, a boy employed to push loaded tubs along the gate roads; or children in general who drew corves with belt and chain on their heads from the headings to the main gates.

Hurry, to haul, pull or push trams of coal etc. –see Hurrier, (Yorks.); or a riddle or screen. (Scot.).

Hussel, Hussle or Hustle, a highly slickensided carbonaceous shale containing coal-pipes, or veins and pyrites.

Hutch. Originally adapted from the hutch measure, i.e. a chest or coffer with a capacity of 2 cwt. It was at first mounted on runners like a sled and then wheels were added to make it into a small tub for transporting coal in the mine. (Scot).

Hutch pin, a check, tally or chalk mark on the side of a hutch, which carried the collier's number.

Hydraulic burster, a water operated device for breaking down coal on the coal face. It consisted of a stainless steel bar bored radially at intervals to accommodate small telescopic pistons which are actuated by water pressure forcing them to extend outwards from the bar. The device was inserted in suitable holes drilled along the face.

Hydraulic chock, -see Chock.

Hydraulic prop, a metal hydraulic hand-operated prop, often used on the face for roof support in conjunction with steel bars. These had an initial setting of 5 tons pressure and would yield when the roof strata weight exceeded 20 tons.

Hydraulic decking plant, -see Balanced platforms.

Hydraulic mining, a method of winning the coal by washing it out with high pressure jets of water.

Hydraulic stowing, a method of stowing (filling or packing) the waste where the packing material is crushed, mixed with water and injected through pipes into the waste.

Hydrox, a blasting method used in gassy mines, similar to Cardox, but using a charge of Hydrox powder, a mixture of sodium nitrite and ammonium chloride. Firing results in a chemical reaction producing nitrogen and steam.

Hyel, whole or solid coal, a harder place to work. (N.East).

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