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Posts Tagged ‘company town’

Originally published in the Pacific Coast Bulletin, June 14, 1923

If working a shift in Black Diamond Mine was no harder for the four men shown above than it was for them to pose for this picture, there would always be a mad scramble among the men to see who could get the first man-trip down.

At the left we introduce to you, George Belt, and next to him, Fred Cunningham, a former Issaquah miner. The man next in line is R.E. “Curly” Campbell and the young Hercules at the extreme right is Darwin Walton. (more…)

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Originally published in the Pacific Coast Bulletin, May 17, 1923

Toonerville trolley

Toonerville trolley

Guided by the accommodating hand of Supt. J.J. Jones, the editor of the Bulletin was conducted through Black Diamond Mine last Friday, May 11, and initiated into the mysteries of digging coal.

Down on the 12th Level, in Chute No. 1, on the South Side, J.D. Walton gave a demonstration of how a pick is used in digging, while up at the face in the gangway some of the boys were busy with a jack hammer, driving the gangway still further along the seam.

At the 11th Level Pete Kurth, cager, was found on the job, busy with the constant string of trips coming and going. Going on up to the 9th, the trip was made on the “Toonerville Trolley”—the auxiliary hoist between the 12th and 7th Levels used until the 12th Level is developed extensively enough to permit the switching of the main trip. (more…)

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Originally published in the Pacific Coast Bulletin, May 3, 1923

Around the top works of a mine the greatest noticeable activity is when the shifts are going on and coming off. During the rest of the time the trips come shooting up the shaft with machine-like regularity, discharge their coal cargoes, and drop back down again with little of the human element in evidence.

That those who stay on top might see who’s responsible below for the daily hoist the Bulletin herewith shows one group of the men ready to go underground for the graveyard shift.

Reading from left to right they are: Elmer Landis, Earl Cooper, L.A. Broulette, Tony Pinter (just peeking over Broulette’s shoulder), Ray Ellis, Wm. Holzhauser, Robt. Wallace, Ed. Sawyer, Joe Zeman, Phil Werle, Eli Celich, I.C. Thompson, and Wm. Kelly. (more…)

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Originally published in the Pacific Coast Bulletin, April 26, 1923

On the front cover of the Pacific Coast Bulletin this week is reproduced a remarkable photograph of a man trip, just as it starts down the slope of Black Diamond Mine with a crew going on the graveyard shift. (more…)

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Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, March 1, 2016

By Bill Kombol

The Franklin company store was once featured in an artist’s drawing from an 1887 promotional flyer which even listed the names of the storekeeper, cashier, and clerks.

The Franklin company store was once featured in an artist’s drawing from an 1887 promotional flyer which even listed the names of the storekeeper, cashier, and clerks.

This photo was taken inside the Franklin company store, but neither the date nor the two persons have been identified. In popular culture, the “company store” has been disparaged in song lyrics (“I owe my soul to the company store”) and by perceptions that it was a monopolistic institution whose sole purpose was gouging workers. However, the reality was somewhat different. (more…)

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Originally published in the Pacific Coast Bulletin, February 8, 1923

Drawn by Chas. Butkus

Drawn by Chas. Butkus

With “Sailor” Leap’s kayo of Battling Morales in the last minute of the first round of a scheduled four-round go and Jimmie Forbes’ easy victory in the second round over Ernie Dorman in the main event on the card, the fans who packed the house at the smoker given by the Black Diamond Athletic Club last Saturday night seemed well satisfied with the show.

Another knockout was scored by “Cougar” Coutcher, second for “Kid” Brundage, when he splashed some Sloan’s Liniment in the eyes of Brundage and so blinded him that the bout had to be called off before the battlers had even a chance to shake hands.

The smoker opened with a battle royal in which five Black Diamond huskies went to it hot and heavy. Ernest Buchanan, otherwise “Kid Montana,” emerged the victor, according to the decision of Referee Nas Matt, whose judgment was endorsed by the crowd. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Times, February 2, 1995

By Stephen Clutter
Seattle Times south bureau

Carl Steiert, an expert on Black Diamond’s history, pauses recently in the Black Diamond Historical Museum, which he helped form in 1974.

Carl Steiert, an expert on Black Diamond’s history, pauses recently in the Black Diamond Historical Museum, which he helped form in 1974.

BLACK DIAMOND — It’s a sunny morning in this rural town in southeast King County. An earthmover rumbles deliberately along a hill where coal mines once flourished. Carpenters are busy. New houses are being built. People are moving in.

On a bench at the Black Diamond Historical Museum sits Carl Steiert, dressed in his overalls and well-oiled work boots, watching it all.

Steiert, 84, is an essential element of a town changing as rapidly as Black Diamond. He’s not a politician or college-educated scholar. He’s a walking, talking archive, and there’s a move afoot to preserve him. (more…)

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