Story Bibliography
Mining Anthracite Bibliography
Further Reading

Aurand, Harold. From the Molly Maguires to the United Mine Workers: The Social Ecology of an Industrial Union, 1869-1897. Philadelphia, PA: Temple University Press, 1971.

An important academic work about the beginnings and development of unionism in the anthracite region.

Blatz, Perry. Democratic Miners: Work and Labor Relations in the Anthracite Coal Industry, 1875-1925. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 1994.

This carefully researched study gives in-depth descriptions of UMWA organization efforts, worker demands and processes of coal mining.

Bodnar, John. Anthracite People: Families, Unions and Work, 1900-1940. Harrisburg, PA: Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, 1983.

A slim but captivating book containing oral histories from members of anthracite mining families.

Bruccoli, Matthew J. The O'Hara Concern: A Biography of John O'Hara. New York: Random House, 1975.

Bruccoli is one of the nation's top literary biographers. He describes the many influences on John O'Hara's life and those connections to the anthracite region appearing in his prolific writings.

Cornell, Robert. The Anthracite Coal Strike of 1902. Washington, DC: Catholic University of America, 1957.

A major work on the causes and consequences of the 1902 anthracite coal strike.

Davies II, Edward J. The Anthracite Aristocracy: Leadership and Social Change in the Hard Coal Regions of Northeastern Pennsylvania, 1800-1930. DeKalb, IL: Northern Illinois University Press, 1985.

In this volume, Davies contributes an important view on the social history of the anthracite revolution.

Dublin, Thomas. When the Mines Closed: Stories of Struggles in Hard Times. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1998.

Readers can hear the voices of many who retell their experiences during deindustrialization of the anthracite region. Complementing the narratives are powerful photographs taken by George Harvan.

Folsom, Jr., Burton W. Urban Capitalists: Entrepreneurs and City Growth in Pennsylvania's Lackawanna and Lehigh Regions, 1800-1920. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1981.

An important academic study, this monograph would most interest advanced students or teachers.

Haine, Edgar A. Anthracite Coal. Chicago, IL: Adams Press, 1987.

Written by a true history of coal enthusiast, this book packs more useful detail into its covers than any other modern study of the industry.

Harold Aurand, ed., "Special Issue: The Lattimer Massacre, 1897," Pennsylvania History 69 (Winter 2002).

Harris, Howard, and Blatz, Perry, eds. Keystone of Democracy: A History of Pennsylvania Workers. Harrisburg, PA: Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, 1999.

A useful collection of brief vignettes on labor history, this volume offers an easy-to-use starting reference for any study of Pennsylvania workers.

Kenny, Kevin. Making Sense of the Molly Maguires. New York: Oxford University Press, 1998.

Were they terrorists, innocent victims or revolutionaries? Kevin Kenny sheds new light on the mysterious Mollys of the 1860s and 1870s.

Knies, Michael. Coal on the Lehigh, 1790-1827: Beginnings and Growth of the Anthracite Industry in Carbon County, Pennsylvania. Easton, PA: Canal History and Technology Press, 2001.

This well illustrated volume offers a strong history of anthracite in the Lehigh Region - valuable beyond the local history of Carbon County.

Korson, George G. Black Rock: Mining Folklore of the Pennsylvania Dutch. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1960.

This is the last of five books that pioneering folklorist George Korson (1899–1967) published on the history of Pennsylvania folklore, folkways, and music.  Like the others, it richly documents stories told and music played by Pennsylvanians, both named and anonymous, about work and life in the Keystone state.

Miller, Donald L. and Richard E. Sharpless. The Kingdom of Coal: Work Enterprise and Ethnic Communities in the Mine Fields. Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1985.

Well written and carefully researched, this monograph is one of the best published studies on the Pennsylvania anthracite industry.

Nicole Wolensky and Robert Wolensky, Kenneth Wolensky. Fighting for the Union Label: The Women's Garment Industry and the ILGWU in Pennsylvania. University Park, PA: Penn State Press, 2002.

A history of women’s garment industry union that makes good use of oral histories.

Novak, Michael. The Guns of Lattimer. New York: Basic Books, 1978.

A great narrative of a tragic episode in the history of labor relations and immigration.

Powderly, Terence. The Path I Trod: The Autobiography of Terence Powderly, ed. Harry J. Carman New York: Columbia University Press, 1940.

Powderly led the Knights of Labor during the early years of political unionism.

Powell, H. Benjamin. "The Pennsylvania Anthracite Industry, 1769-1976." Pennsylvania History:46 (1980): 3-27.

This compact article offers a terrific scholarly overview of the anthracite industry.

Powell, H. Benjamin. Philadelphia's First Fuel Crisis: Jacob Cist and the Developing Market for Pennsylvania Anthracite. University Park, PA: Penn State Press, 1978.

A fascinating story, this absorbing book helps the reader understand the "energy crisis" of the early nineteenth century.

Robert P. Wolensky, Kenneth P. Wolensky, and Nicole H. Wolensky, The Knox Mine Disaster: January 22, 1959: The Final Years of the Northern Anthracite Industry and the Effort to Rebuild a Regional Economy, (Harrisburg, PA: Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, 1999).

A well-argued revisionist study about a disaster that helped spell the end of deep mining in a large portion of the anthracite region.

Salay, David L., ed.. Hard Coal, Hard Times: Ethnicity and Labor in the Anthracite Region. Scranton, PA: Anthracite Museum Press, 1984.

These articles about the experiences of immigrants, labor, and business in the anthracite coal fields were drawn from papers delivered at a 1982 symposium at Scranton's Anthracite Heritage Museum.

Shank, William H. The Amazing Pennsylvania Canals. York, PA: American Canal and Transportation Center, 1981.

Shank's work is the bible of canal enthusiasts.

Wallace, Anthony F. C. St. Clair: An Nineteenth-Century Coal Town's Experience with a Disaster-Prone Industry. New York: Knopf, 1987.

This engaging community study gives an in-depth look at the lives of mining families living in St. Clair, Schuylkill County.

Yearly Jr., Clifton K. Enterprise and Anthracite: Economics and Democracy in Schuykill County, 1820-1875. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1961.

Yearley presents a densely argued study of industrial capitalism in Schuylkill County.

Web Guide

American Philosophical Society, "The Old Country in the New World"

This interactive, on-line exhibit describes life in anthracite patch towns experienced by immigrant families, and contains many historical photographs.

Asa Packer Mansion Museum

This site provides photographs and opportunities to ask questions of museum historians.

Catholic University of America, "Mother Jones Collection"

This collection provides information pertaining to the Anthracite Strike of 1902. Original letters of Mother Jones and photographs can be viewed from this site. Also, provides links to other coal mining web sites.

Eckley Miners Village

Web site maintained by a local school district, but the virtual tour contains photos and videos of some of the town's highlights.

Genealogy Web for Lackawanna County

Offers historical maps, newspaper articles and mining accident descriptions and statistics.

Huber Breaker Preservation Society

Completed in 1939, the Huber Breaker remains among the few remaining anthracite coal breakers in Pennsylvania. The cause to save the Huber began in the early 1990's when the Huber Breaker Preservation Society was formed. The web site provides information about the society and images of the Huber Breaker.

Journal of Multimedia History, Miner's Son, Miner's Photographer: The Life and Work of George Harvan

Captivating photographs of mine workers and collieries in the late 20th century.

Mine Safety and Health Administration, US Department of Labor

Current information about coal and metal mining in the United States. As of August 30, 2002, coal fatalities for the year numbered 22.

National Canal Museum – Hugh Moore Historical Park and Museums

This web site provides a jumping off point in finding information relevant to the canals of Pennsylvania and throughout the United States.

Pennsylvania Annual Reports on Coal Mining Activities

This rich collection of materials on the history of coal mining in Pennsylvania includes annual Mining Reports dating back to 1870, historical photographs and documents, and more.

Switchback Gravity Railroad Foundation

This site contains a history of the railroad as well as a virtual tour along the historic line.

United Mine Workers of America, "A Brief History of the UMWA"

Provides a short history of the formation of the UMWA and links to other materials on coal mining in Pennsylvania.

Back to Top