A Dictionary of Occupational Terms Based on the Classification of Occupations used in the Census of Population, 1921.
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Sub-order 1.—In Coal and Shale Mines

056.—Other Workers Above Ground and In Open Workings

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Note: In addition to the occupational terms contained in this section see also those marked with an asterisk in code 054.

amalgamator (gold)
shovels crushed gold hearing quartz evenly over mercury lying in shallow east iron pan, contents of which are agitated mechanically; removes quartz residues which are swept to the sides of the pan by rotating arms; removes amalgam when sufficiently high in gold content, to be filtered and distilled.
a surface labourer q.v. who wheels ashes from boilers to ash tip, or loads ashes into wagons.
bal girl, bal maiden (Cornish term) ; mine girl
denotes a girl employed on tin dressing floor, as a dressing floors labourer q.v. bank labourer.
bank labourer
see surface labourer.
banksman, banker ; cage attendant, cager, lander, top hand
removes ore or waste from top of shaft; takes wagons out of cage, and puts on empty ones; or, where no cage is used, hooks "kibbles" on to winding rope or takes them off; signals to winding engineman.
bank weigher
see weighman.
see soil remover.
battery attendant, battery watcher, battery worker
see stamp labourer.
belt cleaner
cleans, and keeps in running order, belt on which ore travels, to enable pickers to remove refuse therefrom.
belt lad
see picker.
bogie cleaner
see tub cleaner.
see crusher.
breaks up ore, ready for jiggers q.v., with a buck, i.e., a broadheaded hammer.
buddle attendant, buddle cleaner, buddleman, buddler
operates and keeps clean buddle, usually a series of plane or inclined troughs, in which ore, after it has been crushed and finely ground, is refined or concentrated by allowing running water to wash out lighter and less valuable portions.
buddle wheeler
wheels concentrated ore out of "buddle" (see buddle attendant) in wheelbarrow.
attends to burning house in which tin ore is calcined.
cabin boy
see change house keeper.
cage attendant, cager
see banksman ; cf. onsetter (054).
change house keeper, change house man, changing house keeper, changing house naan ; cabin boy, dry boy or man, dry house attendant, dry house boy or man
keeps in order house or dressing room where miners change their clothes; attends to fire and dries the clothes.
checks, on behalf of miners, weight of ore got, and deductions therefrom at weighbridge; is employed and paid by the workmen.
breaks ore into small pieces with small hammer, and sorts it according to value.
as for bargainman (054).
copper ore spaller
breaks up copper ore with mallet 'into small pieces.
copper picker
separates different grades of copper ore by hand as crushed ore passes on a travelling "picking" belt.
count house boy, count house cat (Cornwall)
an errand boy in counting house or office.
count house keeper, count house maiden, count house woman ; mine girl
cleans counting house, or office, cooks meals for officials, and washes clothes.
crusher, crusher attendant ; breaker, miller, mill feeder, mailman, ore crusher attendant, rock breaker, rock crusher man, rock feeder, stone breaker minder, stone crusher attendant
throws or shovels lumps of ore into crushing mills; controls mills by levers and cleans and oils hearings when necessary; for first or coarse crushing, heavy rock-breakers are used, followed by other breakers, with jaws set to crush somewhat finer; for next stage rolls of many types are used, and for still finer crushings, ball and tube mills.
day labourer
general term for unskilled workers employed at time rates of wages; cf. dataller (054).
day's payman
term sometimes used in tin mines for owner's account man (054) q.v.
delver ; digger
does any unskilled work with pick and shovel.
see delver.
dresser (copper)
dresses, either by hand or by machine, ore sent out from mine, rejecting waste material and selecting that which is valuable; if two or more valuable minerals are both present in same deposits, separates them; first process is generally sorting, by hand; ore is then dealt with by jigs, vanners, revolving tables, etc.
dresser (lead)
general term for all workers in lead dressing shed, including buddler, jigger, slimeman, tableman, vanner q.v.
dresser, ore
(i) as for for ore dresser (054)
(ii) tin mines, see dressing floors labourer.
dresser, tin; tin yard dresser, dressing man
superintends dressing floors, or places where ore is washed and "dressed" to remove impurities.
dressing floors labourer, dressing floors man ; ore dresser, ore washer, stamp floor dresser, tin floors labourer
general terms for workers on dressing floor, engaged in crashing, spalling, or dressing tin or tin ore.
dry boy or man, dry house attendant, or man
see change house keeper.
is in charge of machine for excavating material from quarry face.
framer ; tin frame attendant
regulates supply of tin ore and water to frames or "buddles."
gear sorter
collects and sorts picks, drills, etc., for sharpening.
grass miner
general term for surface workers of mine.
grate holder
(i) holds small sieve and shakes to separate crushed ore according to size;
(ii) see screener.
general term for men working on inferior copper ore.
ironstone barer
removes overburden (topsoil) from ironstone in quarry.
ironstone cleaner
(i) see ironstone napper;
(ii) as for metal picker (054).
ironstone napper ; ironstone cleaner
trims or cleans waste dirt, etc., from ironstone lumps with pick and hammer.
jigger, jigman
controls by levers and generally attends to jig, i.e., water concentration machine used to separate larger portions of ore from rock, stones, etc., with which it is found; watches apparatus for efficient working; oils working parts and keeps them clean.
kieve man
see tosser.
(Yorkshire term ); cleans shale from ironstone with a knapper, a small hammer and pick combined.
lamp cleaner, lampman
attends to safety lamps used underground, and is responsible for cleaning them, etc.
see banksman.
machinist (tin streams)
fits up, maintains and repairs machinery used for obtaining tin ore from alluvial soil in beds of stream.
magnetic separator
feeds crushed ore to hoppers of separating machine; controls machine and removes magnetic ore and waste, as separated, when necessary.
miller, mill feeder, millman
see crusher.
millman (tin mines)
works in ore dressing mills or plants; sees that ore is properly crushed, and then distributed to jigs, tables, buddies, or other machines.
mine girl
(i) in Cornwall see bal girl;
(ii) see count house keeper.
ore cleaner
as for picker, metal (054).
ore crusher attendant
see crusher.
ore washer
(i) (tin mines), see dressing floors labourer;
(ii) (iron mines), see packer, kieve.
owner's account man, owner's count man (Cornwall)
general terms for day worker working in owner's interest as distinct from contractor's, and paid direct by owner.
owner's account man (iron mines)
weighs full tube, trams, or bogies sent out by miners, weight of each tub being credited to miner who has sent it out.
packer, kieve ; ore washer
fills with shovel and attends to kieve or keeve. i.e., a washing tub in which crushed ore is stirred in water by mechanical means and allowed to settle.
picker ; belt lad
picks over ore as it passes over screen or table on travelling picking belt to remove stone, dirt or other impurities.
gets mineral from quarry as distinguished from mine; otherwise similar to miner (054) q.v. raceman; keeps water-race in repair, i.e., channel conveying water to water wheel or turbine.
radium miner
general term for getter and other workers in mine producing ores containing radium.
see sampler.
rock breaker, rock crusher man, rock feeder
see crusher.
sample bruiser
pulverises average sample of ore with flat-headed hammer, ready for sampler q.v.
sampler, sample refiner, sample taker (Cornwall) ; refiner
selects average samples of ore, from which assay or analysis may be made, to determine character and value of material.
screener, screenman ; grate holder
passes crushed iron-stone over screens or sieves, either fixed or movable, to extract iron ore dust.
general term for worker dealing with "slimes," i.e., finely crushed lead ore mixed with water in dressing operations, including tableman, trunker, vanner, and (in Scotland) buddler q.v.
soil remover ; barer
removes topsoil or rubble from above ore.
picks out higher grade lumps of ore as they travel past on endless belt.
sorter (copper ore)
sorts or picks out copper ore mingled with tin ore sent to surface.
sorter, pitchblende
sorts out from pitchblende ore lumps containing pitchblende in sufficient quantity to warrant further treatment, for extraction of uranium and radium compounds.
breaks ore into small pieces, with mallet.
stamper, stampman, stampsman
crushes ore with heavy "stamps," or pestles raised by water or steam, or worked by gravity; watches efficient working of apparatus, supervises stamp labourers, and signals to stamping engine driver q.v.
stamp floor dresser
see dressing floors labourer.
stamp labourer, stamp attendant, stamp watcher ; battery attendant, battery watcher, battery worker
attends to chutes through which ore is run into stamps; regulates rate at which ore is so run.
stone breaker minder
see crusher.
stone crusher attendant
see crusher.
streamer, tin
takas from washing stream (natural), at convenient settling points, tin ore which has settled to bottom of water.
streamer, wolfram
impounds mineral washed down stream from waste of mills attached to wolfram mines, and recovers additional wolfram therefrom; for more usual practice, see magnetic separator.
surface hand ; top hand
general term for man or boy employed at surface of mine.
surface labourer ; bank labourer, yard labourer
an unskilled workman at surface of mine or quarry, engaged in wheeling ashes, discharging timber, grease, oil, etc.
tableman, table watcher
shovels powdered lead ore mixed with sand on to "Wiffley" concentrating table and controls it whilst in operation; removes concentrated ores and depleted sand.
tin cleaner
see tosser.
tin floors labourer
see dressing floors labourer.
tin frame attendant
see framer.
tin stream labourer
does unskilled work in or about tin stream.
tin stream worker
removes heavy alluvial deposits and generally attends to tin stream.
operates lever which tips tubs to empty them of mineral, stone, shale, etc., on bank or tips; sometimes specifically designated according to contents of tubs, e.g., stone tipper, sulphur tipper.
token lad
takes tokens off tubs when sent up to surface filled; (tokens are pieces of metal or leather stamped with miner's or putter's number or mark, and filling or putting).
top hand
(i) see surface hand;
(ii) see banksman.
tosser, tozer ; kieve man, tin cleaner
tosses or shakes pulverized tin ore into water in "kieve," or vat; tin ore, being heavy, sinks to bottom, while refuse rises to top.
trims ore on railway wagons to prevent loss in transport.
truck filler
loads wagons with ore at surface.
separates slimes from ore by running mixture into and out of a long box, launder or trunk.
tub cleaner ; bogie cleaner
cleans tubs, trams, or bogies in which stone or ore is transported.
feeds and tends machinery of manner machine, used for concentration of metal ores, i.e., for sifting out portions of heavier metal bearing ore from lighter rock after it has been crushed; sometimes specifically designated according to type of machine used, e.g. frue vanner.
wagon coupler
couples wagons together at surface of iron mine; usually also uncouples wagons and assists shunter (704) q.v.
wagon filler
fills wagons with ore, etc., in quarry.
wagon loader
loads wagons with ore, shale, etc., at pit head.
wagon pusher
pushes wagons in quarry.
wagon tipper
tips wagons on surface.
washer, ore washer
general terms for any worker who attends to machinery for washing ore, e.g., lead ore to remove impurities, including jigger and buddler q.v.
as for water leader (054).
weighbridge attendant, weighbridge man
weighs ore as it passes over weighbridge; sometimes also keeps record of wagons sent out and labels them to destination.
weigh lad
weighs ore at surface of mine or quarry.
weighman ; bank weigher
(i) weighs full tubs or wagons on weighing machine, weight of each tub being credited to miner who has sent 'it out;
(ii) weighs and despatches loaded railway wagons.
whim driver
drives "whim," a horse-driven capstan for raising ore or water from mine.
prepares, on surface, timber used for support of roof and sides of workings, and sends it into mine.
yard labourer
see surface labourer.

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From: A Dictionary of Occupational Terms Based on the Classification of Occupations used in the Census of Population, 1921,
Ministry of Labour, 1927. Digitised by Peter Christian, August, 2016.   This text is in the Public Domain.