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Archive for January 15th, 2012

Originally published in the Valley Daily News, February 3, 1994

By Mike Archbold

Don Mason (2011) stands next to an old coal car that was once up at Franklin.

Don Mason (2011) stands next to an old coal car that was once up at Franklin.

Don Mason literally walked into the history of Franklin.

The year was 1976 and he was making his way on foot from his house through woods and a partial swamp to the old Kent pioneer cemetery on the crest of the hill above the Valley Freeway. South 212th Street was still a highway planner’s dream.

That’s where he came across the grave of John Hall. The wooden marker simply said he died in the Franklin mine disaster in 1894. But, he wondered, where was Franklin? What mine disaster?

Intrigued by the marker from the past, Don stopped by the library in Black Diamond to find out where Franklin was located. “We met a white-haired old retired coal miner who took me and my two boys up there immediately,” he recalled. (more…)

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