The mine was
registered by James Francis Melville Moodie or as he was
commonly called J. F. Moodie or Frank Moodie in 1911. J. F.
Moodie had prospected the area for several years in search
of what he considered the best possible mine site.
On July 19, 1913, Andrew
N. Scott, District Inspector of Mines in his report stated that
this mine with its two workable seams (top one of 4 feet with
the lower one 85 feet below, of 9 feet in thickness) made it one
of the most valuable and reliable properties in the domestic
coal field in the province
By 1918 when the First
World War had ended, labour and union problems appeared on the
scene. The OBU (One Big Union) and the UMWA (United Mine Workers
of America) were at loggerheads to unionize the miners. The
Alberta Coal Mining Industry Commission of 1919 had hearings
throughout the province as well as in the Valley with
One deciding factor
occurred on Saturday, August 9, 1919 when a group of war
veterans employed at the Rosedale Mine went quietly into
Drumheller and seized 5 or 6 of the One Big Union leaders and
took them out of town and faced them on separate trails and told
them to keep going. That was the end of the OBU influence in the
Valley as on October 11, 1919, the Red Deer Valley Coal Operators
Association secured an injunction against the OBU that
prevented them or their officials from entering the Drumheller
Coal fields or with interfering with the miners in any way.
By 1920 J. F. Moodie had
left the scene, as shareholders who bought into the company
eventually took over control of the company. Moodie. turned to oil
where he pioneered the border oil fields of southern Alberta
before turning to the Sentinel Well in Turner Valley. His oil
career ended in a car accident in 1938. He lived till 1943 and
was 65 years of age.
This article is extracted from Ernest
Hlady, The Valley of the Dinosaurs : Its Families and Coal
Mines (East Coulee, Alberta, East Coulee Community
Association, 1988). The Heritage Community Foundation and the
Year of the Coal Miner Consortium would like to thank Ernest
Hlady and the East Coulee Community Association for permission
to reprint this material.