Skip to content

    The Cherry Mine disaster of November 13th, 1909, was one of the most awful calamities in the history of American mining, nearly three hundred men losing their lives. This remarkable narrative gives the experiences of a man who, with nineteen others, was imprisoned in the bowels of the burning mine for eight days and lived to tell the tale. Driven away from the shaft by flame and smoke, the little band found the deadly "black-damp" closing in about them and retreated to the farther recesses of the workings.

    Here, by the advice of their heroic leader, they literally buried themselves alive, hoping against hope that rescue would come before the fresh air gave out. Finally, even their solitary lamp refused to burn in the foul atmosphere, the men's brains began to give way from the awful strain, and death drew very near. No such story as this has ever been, told before in the annals of coal-mining.

Cherry Mine Disaster Drawing

Thomas White, with his wife and family -- White was one of the miners who were rescued from
the burning mine, and here relates his terrible experience.
(From a photo by A. Churchill )

Next Page