At about the close of the twelfth century, William the Lion whose reign terminated in
1214 AD granted the monks of Holyrood Abbey the tithe of the colliery of Carriden, near Black-
ness, along with the tithe of the harbour at the same place. This seems to be the first reliable
record in the history of coal mining. In the same reign (between 1210 and 1214), the monks of
Newbattle Abbey received the grant of a colliery and quarry on the sea shore at Preston, in the
lands of Tranent, a district from which that early period downward continued to be famous for its
production of coal.