Tag Archives: coal mining

The porches were screened but the coal dust still came in

Moore Hollow boomed during 30’s and 40’s By Lois Kleffman Jackson County Sun [KY] Date Unknown What was it like in Moore Hollow after the mines got started? Luther Powell of Sand Gap says, “It was booming. New York didn’t have any more business than Moore Hollow. You could sell any piece of coal you […]

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When the war ended, all the coal mine whistles blowed

My father was a coal miner back in the…well, he went into the coal mine when he was 12 years old, and he came out when he was 47. And he worked through the First World War, well he worked, that’s all he ever done, ’till he came to the farm. But he worked through […]

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Stearns KY emerges out of the Big Survey

Louis Bryant and Justus Stearns needed each other, and it’s surely no accident that their worlds finally intersected. Bryant, a bright young mining engineer, had moved into what is today McCreary County, KY at the beginning of the 1890s to consolidate mineral and land holdings acquired there by his father. But while the Bryant family […]

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He said if miners picketed his mine he would slaughter them

By January 1, 1941, Harlan and Bell Counties were 95 per cent organized. The only nasty non-union outpost was the Fork Ridge mine just across the Kentucky line in Tennessee, a short distance from Middlesboro. The mine was operated by C. W. (Dusty) Rhodes, president and general manager. Searchlights were placed on the tipple and […]

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The Champion Coal Miner of the World

For all his great accomplishments in the mine, Finzel was not a large man. He was described as being of medium height, and his friends called him “the little big digger.” Because of his great feats, he was often examined by doctors looking for something that made him special. The Cumberland Evening Times noted that at “a physical examination at John Hopkins Hospital he was pronounced the finest muscled man that ever came to the institution.”

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