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Abermain No.2 Colliery, New South Wales

This image is provided for research purposes only and must not be reproduced without the prior permission of the Archives Program, Australian National University.

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CollectionsAdelaide Steamship Company Limited: Harold Cazneaux
Title: Abermain No.2 Colliery, New South Wales
Publisher: Abermain & Seaham Coals; Sydney: Abermain Seaham Collieries, 1925 (Sydney: Pratten Bros.) This image differs from that on page 33 by being more closely cropped.
Series/Report no.: Album of eight photographs of Abermain and Seaham Collieries, Hunter River, and Newcastle wharves, beach and harbour taken by Harold Pierce Cazneaux, 1925.
View of a tall chimney emitting smoke and two smaller ones expressing steam, with colliery buildings in the background. Silhouetted against the sky are the winding wheels, cables, platform and ladders of the machinery that operates the pit shaft lifts. The structure appears to be constructed of steel tracery. Several men stand at the base of the big chimney and two others walk towards the colliery. There is also a dog in the scene. This colliery was opened in 1912 and was one of three that worked the Greta seam, which had been discovered in 1886. Cazneaux printed this image from a photograph he took for one of the many projects assigned to him by the art firm of (Ure) Smith and (Harry) Julius. He and artist, Albert Collins (died 1951) created the illustrations for a souvenir volume for Abermain Seaham Collieries. In the book the picture's title is: Abermain No.2 Colliery - A fine effect.The Archives image differs from that on page 33 by being more closely cropped. Cropping was one of the techniques used by Pictorialist photographers like Cazneaux to create compositions that resembled artworks made in more traditional media. The print is in the Adelaide Steamship Company's collection because in 1905 the company acquired large interests in the Abermain Colliery (near Cessnock), the Seaham Colliery (near Newcastle) and the North Bulli Mine (near Wollongong) in order to secure its source of bunkering coal - a move that was to prove advantageous when the price of British steamering coal rose dramatically in 1908. The interests of the Abermain and Seaham collieries merged in 1922 and in 1931 a further merger created J. & A. Brown & Abermain Seaham. The Adelaide Steamship Company remained the mining company's largest shareholder.


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