Teach PA History
Working Where the Sun Never Shines
Further Reading

Bartoletti, Susan Campbell. Kids on Strike!. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1999.

Through personal narratives and powerful photographs, this book tells the story of child labor in America during the nineteenth and early twentieth century. It provides a description of the working conditions and the treatment of children which led them to strike. Emphasis is placed on strikes, such as the coal strikes in 1897, 1900, and 1902. It also discusses the "Children's Crusade" march in 1903 led by Mother Jones.

Beik, Mildred Allen. The Miners of Windber: The Struggles of New Immigrants for Unionization, 1890's-1930's. . University Park, PA: The Pennsylvania State University Press, 1996.

This detailed history of Windber and its workers and residents focuses on the different immigrant groups in Windber and their struggles for better pay, working conditions, and authority in this company town.

Brophy, John. A Miner's Life. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press, 1964.

John Brophy discusses his life and experience in the coal mines which led to his work in the United Mine Workers of America. Brophy also discusses his conflict with John Lewis who was a very powerful presidential leader of the UMWA.

DiCiccio, Carmen. Coal and Coke in Pennsylvania. Harrisburg, PA: Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, 1996.

This book provides an outstanding overview of the history of Pennsylvania's bituminous coal and coke industry

Hume, Brit. Death and the Mines: Rebellion and Murder in the UMW. New York, New York: Grossman Publishers, 1971.

A history of the events that led to the murder of labor leader Joseph A. "Jock" Yablonski and of the work and reform efforts of the UMWA.

Long, Priscilla. Where the Sun Never Shines: A History of America's Bloody Coal Industry. New York, New York: Paragon House, 1989.

This history of the national coal mining industry up to World War I gives special attention to bituminous coal mining in Pennsylvania.

Meltzer, Milton. Bread and Roses: The Struggle of American Labor 1865-1915. New York, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., 1967.

The story of the American working people from the Civil War to World War I is covered in this book. Through their own words, men, women, and children share what it was like to work in the mines, factories, and sweatshops. They also share their experiences in the company towns and their efforts to organize unions.

Meyerhuber, Carl I., Jr. Less Than Forever: The Rise and Decline of Union Solidarity in Western Pennsylvania, 1914-1948 . Selinsgrove, PA: Susquehanna University Press, 1987.

This study of the efforts of labor unions to organize workers, institute strikes, and bring about reform for coal miners in western Pennsylvania emphasizes the strikes between 1925 to 1928 and reform efforts of the UMWA during the 1920s and early 1930s.

Werstein, Irving. The Great Struggle: Labor in America. New York, New York: Charles Scribner’s, 1965.

The efforts of the workingman to organize unions and fight poor working conditions are explained in this book. Many unions are discussed in this book, including the UMWA.

Web Sites

A Brief History of the UMWA

This links to a page within the United Mine Workers of America website. It offers a page history of the union mentioning its establishment, key leaders, and accomplishments.

Deep Mine Safety

The Bureau of Mine Safety is the state agency "responsible for the health safety of all miners in underground mines throughout the Commonwealth." It provides a number of informative links regarding the safety of miners including: mine inspection (which offers PDFs of mining laws), accident investigation, and emergency response.

McIntyre, Pennsylvania, The Everyday Life Of A Coal Mining Company Town: 1910-1947

A phenomenal website that includes a wonderfully organized array of primary resources on life of the bituminous coal mining town of McIntyre. Included are quotes about memories of mining and photographs of tools, coal buildings, pay stubs, and other artifacts. It also provides useful suggested weblinks to coal information. Just a wonderful site!

Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA)-U.S. Department of Labor

This section of the U.S. Department of Labor was established after the passing the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977. Its mission is "to enforce compliance with mandatory safety and health standards as a means to eliminate fatal accidents; to reduce the frequency and severity of nonfatal accidents; to minimize health hazards; and to promote improved safety and health conditions in the Nation's mines."

Mining Operations in the Pennsylvania Coal Fields

Place the film title, Mining Operations in the Pennsylvania Coal Fields, in the Library of Congress American Memory keyword search to locate this film. This on-line film focuses on the mining operations in the Pennsylvania coal fields. It discusses the various operations of coal mining, such as laying track, dirt moving by explosions, graders, steam shovels, and the steam engines. The film was produced by Thomas A. Edison, Inc.

The Coal and Coke Heritage Center, Penn State, Fayette Campus

This website provides a sampling of the Connellsville area coal and coke industry through the use of oral histories, artifacts, photographs, and other documents that can be found at the Coal and Coke Heritage Center.

The Culture of Coal in South Western Pennsylvania

This website includes historical mining data on Indiana County. The faculty and historians at Indiana University of Pennsylvania have written essays and articles on various bituminous coal mining topics. They have also used coal artifacts in several lesson plans on bituminous coa

Virtual Museum of Coal Mining in Western Pennsylvania

The history of the coal mining industry in much of western Pennsylvania is presented in this site. Included you will find data on individual mines and the companies, websites, historic sites, and museums.

Western Pennsylvania Coal Fields

Coal towns are explained and illustrated in this site. The towns are listed by bituminous coal fields in western Pennsylvania.

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