[NetBehaviour] Our Disasters and the Knox Coal Mine Disaster

Alan Sondheim sondheim at panix.com
Wed Apr 17 03:57:07 CEST 2019

Our Disasters and the Knox Coal Mine Disaster

Some disaster markers from Wyoming Valley. The 1959 Knox disaster
effectively brought an end to anthracite mining in the area; the
mines were flooded, and twelve miners lost their lives. The Avondale
and Baltimore killed many more. The actual site of the Knox isn't
marked, but we headed roughly in the right direction, and some
neighbors showed us the way - down the hill and most likely to the


The mining stats are gruesome - perhaps 60,000 miners died in the
century before the mining stopped - as a result of accidents only,
not counting disease such as black lung. (I'm not sure of these
figures; some sites list only in the hundred. A study I did through
the stats listed around 6000 in one decade of the 19th century. In
1907, around 3700 miners died. The stats are hard to come by and I've
seen wild estimates; I think the numbers lower than I originally
thought. In any case it's high enough.

This chart is sobering:


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