A Rugged Duo: Coal Mining and the Depression

My mother often talked about her first husband, Joe Mills [son of James], and the day he died in 1935 during a mine cave-in near Midland. Mom, Mabel Frances McKenzie, from Garrett County, married Joe Mills in 1928. She was seventeen and he was twenty three years old. I have a photo of them standing

Separate Accidents Kill Three Joseph Mills

Joseph Mills was born at Handsworth, Staffordshire, England, on March 24th, 1837. He immigrated to America and married Mount Savage native Catherine Dean in 1861. By 1890, Joseph and Catherine were the parents of seven daughters and five sons. Joseph supported his family by working as a coal miner. Joseph and Catherine’s son, Joseph Thomas

Hospital for Miners

We hear no more of the proposed hospital for miners. Several months ago the papers said that some influential citizens of Cumberland would try to get an appropriation from the legislature at this session to build a hospital in Lonaconing or Midland. Such a hospital is much needed, for men are being injured in the

The Valley Where Coal was King

From The Sun Magazine, Sunday, January 7, 1968 “THE CHANGE IS IN THE PEOPLE AND NOT IN THE LAND, DESPITE ALL THE DIGGING AND GOUGING” By F. De Sales Meyers Mr. Meyers, the son of a coal miner, grew up in George’s Creek Valley, in Lonaconing, where his mother still resides.  “I have many friends

William Powell

Many pre-adolescent boys were required to garner employment in underground mines to supplement the family coffers. Trapper boys were usually the youngest of the young. Their job was to open and close the heavy wooden doors which blocked the gangways and tunnels in the mine. When closed, the doors directed airflow, allowing fresh air to