is a town
located in the Canadian province
of Nova Scotia
. It is adjacent and to the south of the larger town of New Glasgow
. As of the 2006
census, Stellarton had a population of 4,717. In 1991
, the population was 5,237.
Coal was discovered in the area by the Native peoples before the arrival of Europeans. In the 1790s coal quickly became a key focus of the local economy. The Foord Coal seam (from which the main street of Stellarton derives its name) runs through most of the town and is part of the greater Stellarton Basin/Pictou Coalfield. As part of an area recognized by geologists for its unique oil shales and thick coal seams, the Foord seam is said to be the thickest in the world with estimate of coal seams being as thick as 48 feet.
First known as Albion Mines, the town was incorporated in 1889 as Stellarton and owes its name to one of its oil shales. This coal came to be known as "stellarite" because of the "stars of fire" given off by its sparky flame.
The town is still home to coal mining operations, an open air strip mine is operated by Pioneer Coal.
Stellarton is unique for its painted fire hydrants, each adorned with a costumed representative of a town inhabitant or profession.
The Canadian grocery chain Sobeys is based out of Stellarton, and its corporate offices and grocery subsidiaries provides a fair percentage of the town's employment. Sobeys subsidiarys based in Stellarton include Big 8 Beverages, TRA Cash and Carry, Eastern Sign-Print and Regional Distribution Centre. Sobeys is majority owned by Empire Company.
Former Premier of Nova Scotia John Hamm makes his home in Stellarton, as does Loel Campbell, drummer for the bands Wintersleep, Contrived, The Holy Shroud, and The Remains of Brian Borcherdt