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Most of the photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs, 20 to 200 megabytes in size) from the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) Many were digitized by LOC contractors using a Sinar studio back. They are adjusted by your webmaster for contrast and color in Photoshop before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here.

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • NORTH TUSCANY COAST, 1948

Great-Grandpa was a PA coal miner

Great-Grandpa was a PA coal miner

Miners from near Hazleton, PA. Exact year unknown (probably early 1900s). My great-grandfather is the bottom-left miner. View full size.

Immigrant coal miners

My grandfather immigrated from Slovakia and worked the coal mines in Coaldale, Pennsylvania. Does anyone know what year this might have been?

Greenwood Colliery & drifts behind Birney Plaza, Pa.

Information received.

Slovakia, miners from

One looks like my grandfather. Second row down on left in white shirt and tie. Mikula is last name. He came to PA mines after death of his father in mine accident. Also Mikula. GF left mines to work in auto plant in Detroit.

Taylor, PA, Coal Miner Relatives

My mother's family is from Taylor where her father, George Zigmont was a coal miner. They lived in a neighborhood called "The Patch." The houses were built on top of the mineshafts while they were digging the coal out underneath. Years later the abandoned shafts started caving in and the houses became unstable. The entire community was condemned and the homeowners forced to move.

My grandfather, his daughter, my great-aunt (who owned Rudy's Bar at the top of 4th Street) and her daughter were among those who had to give up their homes and got virtually nothing for their property or houses. I believe this was in the 1960s or possibly early '70s.

George's father, Anthony Zigmont, immigrated from Austria/Poland in 1893 and settled in Taylor. How did these immigrants wind up in Taylor from Ellis Island? Did someone direct them there? Did they already have relatives in the area? Was there a group who immigrated from the motherland and settled together in Taylor? If so, does anyone know where in Austria/Poland they came from?

Information please

My great-grandfather immigrated from Hungary to work the coal mines at Derringer and Tomhicken circa 1887. I welcome any information you may have about how they were recruited, how they were transported from the port of entry to Tomhicken.

The Pennsylvania Historical society record of Lucerne County said miners paid for a plot of land to bury their loved ones. My great-grandparents lost three of their children and I would like to locate where they are buried. Also I am interested in knowing if their deaths were recorded by the State of Pennsylvania or some other agency (Town, County) that existed at the time.

Finally, I want to know of any stories that were written about the life that they and their families endured during this time.

Please contact me at mtkotsay@comcast.net

Thank you very much.

[Your great-grandparents -- what were their names? - Dave]

G-Grandfather Lithuanian coal miner in Hazleton.

Apparently my Lithuanian G-Grandfather was a coal miner in Hazleton, PA around 1900-1915. Haven't been able to find out much more information than that. Anyone know where I can find census records, by chance?

Hazelton Mines

My mother's father, Conrad Sandrock, worked the mines around Hazelton most of his life. They lived in a small town just out side of Hazelton called Hollywood. There were strip mines across the road when I was young (1950s and '60s). I always love looking at the pictures on this site and wondering if my grandfather worked with any of these men. I know I have never worked a day in my life that would compare to one day in these mines. I take my hat off to all the men who fed their families do this kind of work. Would love to see the average kid nowadays try that.

Taylor Borough Mine Disaster 1907

I now have more information regarding when and where my Great GF and Great Uncle were killed. It was the Holden Mine in Taylor Borough, PA. Any information would be great!
rcanfield4@yahoo.com
dot2lee@yahoo.com

Lithuanians in the PA mines

My great grandfather and great-grandmother worked in the Scranton mines during the early 1990s [1890s? - Dave]. My grandmother was born in Scranton in 1915.I am interested in finding more info especially documentation of their existence. Their names were August and Anna Palukis. Have you found any similar info?

My email address in barthra@utrc.utc.com
Thanks
Bob Barth from CT.

Davis miners of Schuylkill Co. PA

My David ancestors were all coal miners from Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, in the late 1800s and early 1900s. John Davis, my great-great-great grandfather, came from Wales as a small child. He married Ann Hanna and died in 1902. One of their sons, David David Davis [??] (my great-great grandfather), and Charles Garfield Davis (great grandfather) were miners. I don't know if at any point they spelled or changed their name from Davies to Davis. But there were so many Davis and Davies miners during that time. This was such a huge family with so many children from each generation and I know there were other John Davis'/Davies in the family. Do you have any further info about the family I could research and maybe help? Please email me, froggy3538@msn.com

Williams Coal Miner

My great-grandfather and great-uncle both died in a coal mining explosion near Scranton. I am not sure where though. My dad says it was before he was born, prior to 1928. He thinks it was in Taylor, PA. Anyone have any info on Williams? rcanfield4@yahoo.com

Mining disaster info

I would recommend contacting the following for starters:
http://www.pioneertunnel.com/home.shtml

After that, try the Pennsylvania Archives at:
http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt?open=512&objID=2887&&leve...

One other area is the Luzerne County website.
http://www.luzernecounty.org/living/history_of_luzerne_county

These people are an excellent resource at the Osterhout Library:
http://www.osterhout.lib.pa.us/

Last but not least. Go here first:
http://www.luzernecounty.com/links2.htm

I do not think you will be too successful in your quest. I hope I have been somewhat helpful to you and not caused too much confusion.

Good luck.

Mining disaster 1911

I live in the uk and have two family members with a date of death/ burial 13/5/1911. Can you tell me where I could find a list of miners killed in Throop disaster in 1911. My email is caroleh1@hotmail.com

Underwood Connection?

I recently found a photo of breaker boys on a site called "100 Photographs that Changed the World" by LIFE. My grandfather and G. Grandfather worked in the mines in PA and W.V. The 4th boy from the left, in the front row I believe is my grandfather. If you took my nephew, put him in those clothes, and smeared coal dust on his face, you would not be able to tell them apart. Even the way he stands to the look on his face (we call that the Underwood scowl, my dad had it, my son has it, and my granddaughter has it.
In researching the picture, it was breaker boys from South Pittson, PA. If any one has any information on Clyde or Fred Underwood, I would be excited to hear from you at: kenginlaz@comcast.net.

Thanks!

Underwood Colliery

I am looking for pictures, information, families that have relatives that lived in Underwood Village near Scranton that are interested in sharing photos, etc. My grandfather was a mine superintendent there until they tore the village down. Thanks.

[How are people supposed to get in touch with you? - Dave]

Two Lithuanian GGF's were Coal Miners

One was naturalized in 1892. He lived in Scranton, Nanticoke or Sheatown at various times.

I suspect he was brought over as "Contract Labor". That was the story from Grandfather, supposedly it was a German firm. Anyone know the names of the companies that did this sort of thing, in those days?

Does anyone understand what the immigration process was at that time? I'm trying to work backwards from the Naturalization to establish the year he came over.

His last name was Lastauskas (which morphed into Lastowski).

Coal miners in the 1920 Census

I'm researching family in VA and WV. I found in a 1920 census in column 13 (normally for year of immigration) the letters BWF and sometimes MH and these men were coal miners. Can anyone tell me what the initials stand for? I'm aware of the UMWA, a union. Could they be the initials of the company name of the mine? Also the birth state has USW above the state name. Am I on the right track? Thanks for any help.

Carol Caf1b2h@cox.net

[Googling those initials gives this answer: The census abbreviation BwF means boy living with father; MH means a miner is the head of the household. - Dave]

My great great grandfather

My great great grandfather worked in the PA coal mines. He died in 1906 in Scranton when he failed to heed his helper's warnings to not go back and relight the fuse. He was 46. I have his obituary and death certificate. He suffered a crushed hand, fractured skull and a fractured radius and died from shock. There were reports that his eyeball fell out but I'm not sure. His wife had a ride to the hospital but did not have a ride back so she had to walk 15 miles back home to tell my great grandfather and his siblings that their dad had died. So, my great grandfather and his younger brother started working in the mines when they were 11 and 10, respectively. He was born in Switzerland and only spoke German at home. He's buried in Forest Home Cemetery in Taylor. I think my great grandfather started working Pyne Breaker in Taylor and my aunts at the Economy Silk mill in Taylor.

Pa. Miners

Hi! My family (from Plymouth) were all coal miners. They were McCues, Burnses and Keefes, from Carver Street and Vine Street and Shawnee Avenue. My Uncle Fritz (Francis Keefe) was blown up in a mining accident in the 1950's, and nearly killed, but left with a green freckled face on the left side.

The early relatives were Hugh McCue and Peter Burns from Ireland. County Cork and County Downs. Do you know anything of that? My mother's father, Patrick McCue, born in the 1870's, worked as a breaker boy starting when he was 9. He was orphaned that year.

Please respond to Turkeyfether@aol.com

Thanks, Kathy

Lithuanian Miner George Neceskas

My grandfather George Neceskas was a miner in Scranton PA at the Marvin Mine. (His Army discharge papers list his name as George Netetsky). Some of his relatives still live in Scranton, although I am not personally acquainted with any of them. None of us ever went down in the mines after he did. He had 4 children. 3 of those 4 had a total of 6 children (including my brother and I) and those 6 children had a total of 8 children. 2 of those 8 children have 2 children each. None of those 4 bear his last name anymore, although there are still some Neceskases living in New England now. Only his children spoke Lithuanian. None of his other descendants were taught the language.

No 6 mine Lansford

I am looking for any info on # 6 mine in Lansford. My grandfather was a miner there and suffered a massive stroke in the mine. PLEASE if you have any info or pictures of this mine, PLEASE contact me papasgirl@verizon.net. Thank you very much.

No. 9 Mine

Mike Lukas was my grandfather from Lansford, Pa., and worked in the No. 9 mine until it closed in 1972.

- Mike Futchko
badkarmahunter@yahoo.com

Hello from Windber

Hello from Windber, Pa. I am writing stories at the present for our new quarterly historical newsletter for the Windber Area Musuem, it is being mailed out to museum members as a thank you for their support, membership is only $5 per yr, if interested in receiving it. Your story of remembering the guns, etc. is one of the few I have heard from someone who acutally still remembers that period of time in Windber's coal strikes., etc. If you have any photos, or a story of interest, small or big, memories, etc. that I could put in our newsletter I would be happy to receive it. Also if you happen to have served in the military service we are planning to honor the men and woman from this area by having their photos and service records displayed during the month of July in the museum. thank you for your interest in our endeavor. Patricia M. Shaffer, dstubbles5@aol.com

Great-Granddad

My great-grandfather John Davies was a coal miner from Milnesville. I believe he's in this photo, bottom right hand corner, second from the right. He came to the U.S. from Wales between 1880 & 1895.

Dusick

The 1900 census just says that my great grandfather worked in a local mine. Doesn't help. They were Roman Catholic as far as I know. My grandfather's 1917 draft registration form gives more clues. He worked in the Lattimer mines and lived on 992 Peace Street Hazleton.

When my great grandfather was 60 in the 1920 census he said he worked with a timber gang. Does anyone know what that was? My grandfather worked as a slate picker when he was 13. Those poor young boys.

John McGarvey

My grandfather died in a cave-in in 1887, before my father was born in late November 1887. Name John McGarvey. wmcgarvey@tampabay.rr.com

Stephen and Mary Dusick

If you could let us know the exact name of the mine it would help! Not sure if my great grandfather, George Remetta, knew your relatives. If there were Slovak Lutherans, there is a great chance they knew each other. My great grandparents attended Sts. Peter and Paul Slovak Lutheran church in Freeland. Church records are available through LDS Family centers and are complete although they are written in Slovak! Let me know...I'll be checking back with this site from time to time!

Deb Remetta

Your grandfather John Yuhasz

Do you know the names of the other miners in the photo? I'm still looking for information on my great grandfather, George Remetta and his son, also George, who were coal miners in Hazleton or Freeland during that time. Also, what was the name of the mine?

WOW!

Wow! I haven't been back to Shorpy for a while now, and it's cool to see that this photo has sparked such a discussion!

I'll take a look at my original scan when I get home tonight and see if there is any other info on the back of the image. I scanned both front and back. (The original photois in the possession of my Uncle). As I remember it, tho, the only person identified is my great-great grandfather. I'll post back if I find anything else interesting.

Lansford PA

It's Lansford, not Langsford. The No. 9 mine is now a tourist attraction. It also has a museum which has lots of history and photos.

Lattimer Mines and Mine Records

Pardee Brothers and Co. Ario (Ariovistus) Pardee was patriach of one of the three prominent families (Markle and Coxe Families are the others)who first developed the mines in the Hazleton Area also known as The Eastern Middle Anthracite Field. Pardee operated the Lattimer Mines where my great grandfather worked and where my grandmother was born.

For those looking for mining records, look for the Annual Report of the Inspector of Mines. These reports cover PA's anthracite and bituminous mining districts from 1870 to present. The reports from 1870 to 1920 or so are particularly detailed. If you had an ancestor who was killed or injured in an accident, his name, age, and a description of the incident will be included. You can find some years for some districts online at rootsweb. Otherwise if you know the area where they worked, the local library may have copies. If not the State Library and PA Geologic Survey Library in Harrisburg have the complete set.

correction: Lattimer Mines is place where my grandfather worked

After doing more research I now know the place was Lattimer Mines but I still cannot read _____ Bros. & Co ____

Hazleton Mines

My great grandparents Stephen and Mary Dusick came to this country in 1888 from Spisska Nova Ves in Slovakia. They knew the place as Iglo Spisska Austria. They had a one year old son also named Stephen. My great grandfather and my grandfather worked in the mines. On the 1900 census I learned that my father, a 13 year old boy, was working as a slate picker.

Perhaps George Remeta or his children knew my family. :)My grandfathers 1917 draft registration gives the name of the mine but I find it hard to read. Looks like Pzeda Bros. & Co Lattisonee Mines PA. I know I'm not close but maybe someone will recognize a few letters.

Scott Haven

Scott Haven is on the Youghigheny River south of McKeesport.Coal mines in this area were Shaner,Guffy and Banning.Many other small independent mines.There is not much left in Scott Haven now.I'm not sure there is even a post office left.

Knox mine disaster

My grandfather was the last one pulled out. Next Jan 22 is there any talk of a get together?

Langsford PA

I am also interested in confirming a Lithuanian miner of No. 9 mine in Langsford, PA. Any help would be appreciated. Michael Lucas or Lukas or Lukasewicz. Thanks!

Lance Lucas
Amherst, MA

Anthracite coal

You're asking about a chunk of anthracite coal. I can sell you a 5 or 6 pound piece for $5 plus postage. I live in Pittston.

Jim Bussacco
bing1124.1@netzero.com

River ferries & PA coal mines

My grandfather ran a river ferry at Frank, Pennsylvania, also called Scott Haven (name of the post office). The name of the coal mine was different and I have forgotten what it is. I would like to know if anyone knows where this place is today. I have pictures of the ferry and the school. Granddad moved the family in about 1920 to Crooksville, Ohio to a dairy farm. The mine either closed or was a strike and he had a family to keep. Any help is appreciated.

Judy

Throop PA

I was just reading your reply regarding your greatgrandfather being in the photo. i was born and raised in Throop and both of my grandfathers worked at the pancoast mine and also my wifes grandfather. Do you have any other names of people in the photo? I hae a lot of info regading Throop and can be contacted at sandsroad1@hotmail.com. thanks

Belgian miners

Does anyone have information on Max Romaine or Alex Small from Primrose Pa.? Alex was my grandfather and Max my great uncle. We are trying to build a family tree and don't have much information on the Romaine part of the family. I know for sure Alex worked in the mine for 50 years and helped get benefits for black lung. I believe Max was also a miner.

Pancoast mine disaster

My grandfather (Joseph Urbanowich) and perhaps his father worked the Pancoast mine .. I was wondering if your information includes the names of the 72 people who perished in the disaster. My grandfather was only 12 at the time, and I cannot find any information about his father. My grandfather was Lithuanian, lived on Bellman Street in Throop (Dickson City) in 1917 .. and then a couple of other places in Dickson City. I vaguely remember him saying something about being born around Wyoming Pa as well .. In any case, I'm interested in your booklet .. do you take paypal ??

PA Lithuanian Coal Miners

My grandfather was a Lithuanian miner sometime before 1960. He lived in Pittston. I'd like to find out more about the Lithuanian miners and their families.

Hazleton, Pennsylvania

Hazleton is near where the Luzerne, Carbon, and Schuylkill County lines meet. It is about 28 miles South or Southeast of Wilkes-Barre.

Johnny DeVera

My dear father passed away one week ago. he and my mother are both from Pittston. PA. while going through his things, we came upon a story about a coal miner who never wanted his 11 year old son to follow in his footsteps, but rather wanted him to find a new life. Unfortunately, as the story goes, he found a new life, only to return to the old and meet his death. it is a two page story. beautifully written. my grandfather was a great writer. the story has no author. we are trying to locate the author. could be my father too. we wonder if this is a true story, regarding the outlaw, Johnny DeVera, the son of a coal miner in PA

Mine Accident

Go to www.nytimes.com, and do an archive search for the 1851 to 1980 archives. Put WILKES BARRE MINE in the search box, and confine your search to May 25, 1928 to May 31, 1928. You will come up with three articles about the Parsons mine disaster. However, you will only be able to see the headlines. If you can find a public or college library that has ProQuest, which gives you free online access to the NY Times, you can read and print these articles. Good luck! Joe Manning, Lewis Hine Project.

My Great-Grandfather was a Coal Miner too!

He lived near the Hazleton area and actually died in a mine collapse in 1928. I have tried to find records of this mine explosion, but all I can find is a list of mine explosions, and there was one where 10 men died in Parsons, Pa. There was no article attached. I'm thinking that might have been the one where he died. According to family stories, he died during a rescue attempt. Anyway, on the upper right hand corner of this picture is a young man standing in the background who has a strong resemblance to some of the pictures I have of my Great-Grandfather. I would love to be able to find out if that was him.

My Great Grandfather is in the photo too!

John Yuhasz, the tall gent in the back row, fifth from the right (including the boy) is my great grandfather. He migrated from Hungary to work in the mines. He built a home on Goodman Street in Throop by the ball field just before he was killed in the accident. His wife never remarried, but his son, my grandfather Louis, worked in the mines until he was in his early 30's, then moved to Detroit, where he worked for Packard Motor Cars. My mother has this photo too. Louis passed away in 1994 at the age of 87, but he still had his carbide lamp.

Looking for Coal

Anyone know where I can order/buy a sample of anthracite?

Prepsels

Looking for info on Prepsels, late 1800s early 1900's. My grandfather Raymond Prepsel (spelled Prepsal on some papers) came from Austria/Hungary to work the mines in the Hazelton area. On his certificate of competency issued by the Miners' Examining Board of the Fifth District of Luz. Co., Pa. dated July 16, 1898, his name is spelled Bribsel. He resided in Deringer in Luzerine [Luzerne?] County. My great-grandfather Paul was also living in the area and in Lost Creek, Pennsylvania. I'm doing my family tree and hope someone who reads this can help me. I only know that Elizabeth Prepsel (Raymond's sister ) married a Leo Witkowski and lived in Lost Creek. I'll keep checking back on this site.

This is the names of the people who signed his competency certificate are Anthony Reilly, Isaac Williams and William Dinko.

Anthracite coal mining

I always like logging onto your site. My father and three brothers were coal miners in the Pittston region. I worked as an outside laborer in the tipple of a mine. In 1943, I left the mine to go into the US Navy. When I returned after the war. I worked in strippings.

Pittston was the greatest town in anthracite mining and had plenty of accidents. The last being the Knox mine disaster in 1959. I wrote a book about coal mining in Pittston, including most of the major disasters. I also have a great collection of coal mine pictures, including the Knox Mine Disaster.

I hope more people with coal mine connections log in your site,

Thank you
Jim Bussacco bing1124.1@netzero.com

 
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