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Hillcrest Mine

James Keelaghan
Lingua: Inglese


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(James Keelaghan)


[1988]
Lyrics and Music by James Keelaghan
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The Hillcrest mine disaster, the worst coal mining disaster in Canadian history, occurred at Hillcrest, Alberta, in the Crowsnest Pass region of western Canada, on Friday June 19, 1914.
At the time it was the world's third worst mine disaster. The accident had a profound effect on the town of Hillcrest Mines, which in 1914 had a population of about 1,000. A total of 189 men died, about half of the mine’s total workforce, which left 130 women widowed and about 400 children fatherless. Many of the victims were buried in a mass grave at the Hillcrest Cemetery. Condolences came from across the country, including a brief message from King George V, but the commencement of World War I soon overshadowed this event.

Another explosion occurred in the Hillcrest Mine on September 19, 1926 when the mine was idle, killing two men. Explosions at other coal mines within the Crowsnest Pass also caused deaths: Coal Creek, 1902 (128 men killed); Michel, 1904 (7); Coleman, 1907 (3); Bellevue, 1910 (30); Michel, 1916 (12); Coal Creek, 1917 (34); Coleman, 1926 (10); Michel, 1938 (3).

Operations at Hillcrest Mine continued until 1939…

A monument to the Hillcrest mine disaster and the lives lost has been placed at the Hillcrest cemetery.
Down in the mines of the Crowsnest Pass
It's the men that die in labour
Sweating coal from the womb of the pit
It's the smell of life they savour
And in that mine, young man, you'll find
A wealth of broken dreams
As long and as dark and as black and as wide
As the coal in the Hillcrest seam.

And they say you don't go, say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine,
And they say you don't go, say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine
'Cause it's one short step, you might leave this world behind,
And they say you don't go, say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine.

I've heard it whispered in the light of dawn
That mountain sometimes moves.
That bodes ill for the morning shift
And you know what you're gonna lose.
Don't go, my son, where the deep coal runs.
Turn your back to the mine on the hill
'Cause if the dust and the dark and the gas don't getcha,
Then the goons and the bosses will.

And they say you don't go, say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine,
Say you don't go; say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine
'Cause it's one short step, you might leave this world behind,
Say you don't go, say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine.

And they say you don't go!

Well son, I'm gonna open up
I'm gonna have my say
You'll get no peace from the Hillcrest Mine
'Cept the peace of an early grave
Go out and work for the workers' rights
Go work for the workers' needs
Don't stay down here to toil for your buck
To be a tool for the owner's greed.

Say you don't go, say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine,
Say you don't go, say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine
'Cause it's one short step, you might leave this world behind,
Say you don't go, say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine.

And they say you don't go, say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine,
Say you don't go, say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine
'Cause it's one short step, you might leave this world behind,
Say you don't go, say you don't go down in the Hillcrest Mine.

inviata da giorgio - 7/1/2010 - 20:03



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