Seneca Lent McMullen, one of the builders of the coal mining
industry in western Canada, came from Truro, Nova Scotia to the
Drumheller valley in 1912 when this coal field was but one year
old. He purchased a lease on which there was no development and
commenced the operation of the Midland Mine.
Later he left mining and entered the machinery business.
After a spell in the mine machinery field, he again took over
the Midland along with Mr.
Garnet Coyle. The McMullen Coyle
combination made rapid developments and shipments of Midland
coal were soon heading to practically all corners of Canada.
Later Mr. McMullen took over the Coyle shares in the business
and conducted the mine on his own. The Midland Coal company
became one of the largest producers in the district.
In community life Mr. McMullen was a member of the Masonic
Lodge, a president of the Rotary Club, member of the Board of
Trade and the Coal Operators Association. Another keen interest
was the Militia. He became an Honorary Colonel of the Calgary
Highlanders and the R. C. A. S. C. in Calgary.
Because of poor health, Mr. McMullen had moved to Victoria
but at the outbreak of the Second World War, he returned to
Calgary where he assisted greatly in recruiting. He passed away
in Victoria in 1941.
His sons Arthur and Sidney were both officers in the Canadian
Forces which served overseas.
This article is based on the article titled "Seneca Lent McMullen" in the book The Hills of Home: Drumheller Valley (Drumheller
Valley History Association, 1973). The Heritage Community Foundation and the
Year of the Coal Miner Consortium would like to thank the Drumheller Valley
History Association for this contribution.