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About Theresa Nichols Schuster
- Theresa Nichols Schuster
- Theresa Nichols Schuster is author of "Brittle Silver" and "We Are the Warriors" a 2015 USA Regional Excellence Book Award Finalist. She currently lives in southwest Montana where she appreciated the wonders of nature, family, friends, a bit of pottery.
Saturday, May 30, 2015
You can now find me at www.tnschuster.com! This web address will also link up to my blog. It is a work in progress...I finally took the leap!
On my way across the country recently to visit family, I became immersed in a powerful and tragic story. "The 1909 Cherry Mine Disaster" by Karen Tinori is a compelling book written about the events leading up to and through the Cherry Mine fire and disaster in Illinois in the early 1900's. I could not help but be struck by the human courage, the will to survive and the heroism exhibited in the face of death by so many. Unfortunately the story of how small things can be ignored until, in a cause and effect topple, there is no turning back.
During those eight days, 259 men and boys would die in the coal mine. Some from the fire, some from the "black damp," an unbreathable mixture of carbon dioxide and nitrogen. Many women became widows and scores of children lost their fathers. One street of about forty houses became nicknamed "Widow's Row," as only a handful of men returned to those houses. After eight days underground, 21 miners would return to the surface.
Soon after the Cherry Mine Disaster, hearings were held, changes in mining laws mandated, and the beginnings of worker's compensation instituted. Mining for minerals is a fact of our modern society, replete with its need for technology, wiring, vehicles, etc. Without a doubt, mining is still a dangerous occupation. Tinori's book takes you directly into the life, and unfortunately for many, the death, of the miner.
Wishing you a few good reads and thoughtful reflections during the summer days.
(Photos of Granite, Montana, silver mining ghost town at 7,000 feet high in the mountains. Boom days 1890s)