Whitequarries mine opened in around 1900 and was part of the little-known Scottish oil shale industry. In the 1920s about 820 tons of oil shale were excavated each day which was then processed to provide petrochemicals. The mine closed in 1962.
The mine consisted of horizontal galleries, linked by passages at around 45 degrees. Product was winched up these slopes on an inlined railway. Much of the mine is now flooded but it is estimated that 75 million tons of oil shale remain in the area.
When visited in 2004, high levels of carbon dioxide were encountered so entry to the mine is strongly discouraged.