The name Westville was chosen because the community was west of the Albion Mines. The first settlers actually refered to the area as the Acadia Village until a public meeting was held in 1868 and the area was renamed Westville. Incorporated in 1894, Westville has a long history of coal mining dating back to 1864 when coal was first discovered. Then in 1866 the Acadia Mine opened. Westville, became home to a thriving coal mining industry. At its peak, during WWI, Westville boasted three underground workings; the Black Diamond, the Acadia and the Drummond. However, the last underground mine, the Drummond pit, closed in the 1970s. Extensive open-pit mining on the Drummond and Acadia sites was carried out throughout the 1980s and 1990s, by Pioneer Coal Limited. Today one of the Town's many recreational facilities sits on this land, donated to the Town by Pioneer Coal. While the mines have now closed the miner's monument at Acadia Park still stands as a tribute honoring those touched by the town's mining disasters.
Like many coal towns Westville was a hotbed of sports. Baseball was very popular among the miners. One of the Westville baseball teams was crowned Maritime champion in 1927 and the legendary Babe Ruth visited the town in 1936 hitting a ball over the centre field fence. Some of the Town's sporting trophys from this era are currently on display at the Town's Civic Building.
Today, Westville and the surrounding area make up the third largest population centre in Nova Scotia. Westville's Main Street features banks, shops, restaurants and a recently renovated and renamed Foodland supermarket, as well as the newly built Lawtons, which is attached to the local doctor's office in the community. A Nova Scotia highway rest stop was opened at the end of Cowan Street off Exit 21 of the Trans-Canada Highway.
Where the Acadia mine once stood today stands Acadia Park. The land has been reclaimed and returned to its former state featuring walking trails, bridges, green spaces, and a childrens play area. This is just one of the many examples where the former mining Town pays hommage to its mining history.
Over the years, Westville has seen its share of mining successes and disasters. The monument in the Acadia Park dedicated to past miners of the Town, provides a peaceful spot to stop and reflect on those fearless forefathers of the town who dug “black diamonds from the ground”. The monument is the oldest and tallest outside a cemetery in Nova Scotia.