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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

When Coal Was King

Ladysmith and the Coal-Mining Industry on Vancouver Island

The town of Ladysmith was one of the most important coal-mining communities on Vancouver Island during the early twentieth century. The Ladysmith miners had a reputation for radicalism and militancy and engaged in bitter struggles for union recognition and economic justice, most notably the Great Strike of 1912-14. This strike, one of the longest and most violent labour disputes in Canadian history, marked a watershed in the history of the town and the coal industry.

288 pages

Table of Contents



1 A Selfish Millionaire

2 A Town of Merry Hearts

3 Down in the Dark and Gloomy Dungeons

4 Death’s Cold Hand

5 From Pillar to Post

6 The Great Strike

7 No Ordinary Riot


Notes; Bibliography; Index

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