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Posts Tagged ‘Polish’

Originally published in The Seattle Times, May 7, 1961

By Lucile McDonald

Of all the “lost” towns of King County the mostly thoroughly obliterated probably is Taylor, seven miles east of Maple Valley.

Taylor, once with a population close to 700 persons, was swallowed by the Cedar River watershed. Today a young forest is springing from its streets and gardens, and the sites of the coal bunkers and kilns of its once-prosperous clay industry.

Taylor ceased to exist in 1947. Two years earlier, the Seattle Water Department had obtained a condemnation judgment permitting it to include the town in the watershed. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Sunday Times, August 27, 1961

By Lucile McDonald

Coal industry surges are an old thing to the town of Ravensdale. One such surge, in the late 1920s, brought reconstruction and modernization of the town, as shown above in a photo taken by Asahel Curtis.

Coal industry surges are an old thing to the town of Ravensdale. One such surge, in the late 1920s, brought reconstruction and modernization of the town, as shown above in a photo taken by Asahel Curtis.

“We’ve lived in coal revivals since 1915. We have spurts and then, they fall off,” observed John Markus, Sr., proprietor of Ravensdale’s principal place of business, a grocery on the Kent-Kangley Road.

The little community with the euphonious name in South King County’s coal belt is about to have another “spurt,” however. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, November 12, 1910

Wrecked mine car located under mass of wreckage and falls at Black Diamond and bodies recovered

Search party works under great handicap; remains of Foreman Lunden only one to be identified—others may be laid away in common grave

Tombstone for Dave Lunden, Lawson Mine fire boss.

Tombstone for Dave Lunden, Lawson Mine fire boss.

Located under the mass of wreckage and falls where it had lain since the explosion of dust and black damp last Sunday morning, the mine car containing the bodies of the ten repair men caught on the Lawson slope was uncovered last evening and all the bodies were found. The removal to the surface has since been conducted with dispatch but only after greatest hardships on the part of the rescuing party.

All the bodies are in such a state of decomposition that only the body of Dave Lunden, fire boss, in charge of the crew, has been identified. A common grave may be the lot of the others. The bodies of the five men caught at the bottom of the slope, on the No. 6 level, may not be recovered for days, if at all. (more…)

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Originally published in the Globe News, July 4, 1976

By Eric Payne

Coal company bulletin: ‘The weakness of the trade union ...’

Coal company bulletin: ‘The weakness of the trade union …’

The world needed more energy.

Working men needed more money.

The world decided coal would suit its need nicely.

Working men decided trade unions were the means to a higher standard of living.

So the irresistible force met the immovable object—and South King County was one of the battlegrounds.

Some old men still remember the war. Today we live in small houses in North Renton, in homes nestled among the trees in Coalfield and Newcastle and Kangley, in shacks outside of Black Diamond. They were the front lines. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Times, July 21, 1974

By Patricia Latourette Lucas

Lizzie Polli, 91, turned the pages of a family Bible.

Lizzie Polli, 91, turned the pages of a family Bible.

“WHAT’S THE difference?” said Lizzie McDonald Shafer Maxwell Polli. “So much bull comes out of my mouth, you could use it to fertilize your garden. It’s all bull.”

And yet as the afternoon wore on and we sifted through her little stacks of papers and pictures, I began to believe what the little 91-year-old lady who lives in the last remaining homestead in Maple Valley was saying.

Lizzie Polli doesn’t mince words; she has worked in coal mines, a slaughter house and at race tracks. And still she has a certain dignity.

She served popcorn, candy bars and chocolate cake as she sat in a straight-back chair at a rickety old table, her blue eyes growing dim as she searched the past for memories. (more…)

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Originally published in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, January 12, 1970

By Richard F. Simmons

cemetery_2012BLACK DIAMOND — Ben Krauer dumped another shovel full of dirt beside the grave he was digging and then paused a moment to rest.

Down the hill from the little sloping cemetery a one-eyed mongrel dog squeezed under a barbed-wire fence and wandered up the hill sniffing the air. Ben scratched him behind the ear and the dog thanked him with a wag of his tail. (more…)

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Originally published in the Black Diamond Bulletin, Summer 2013

By Bill Kombol

The Coal Miners’ Honor Garden was dedicated during Black Diamond Miners’ Day, July 6. (Photo: Bob Dobson.)

The Coal Miners’ Honor Garden was dedicated during Black Diamond Miners’ Day, July 6. (Photo: Bob Dobson.)

My father was a coal miner. So were both grandfathers and three of my four great-grandfathers. As were a host of uncles, great uncles, and cousins. I was privileged to work at a coal mine, Rogers No. 3 in Ravensdale—the last underground coal mine in the state of Washington. One of the first books I can remember having read to me was Two Little Miners.

You might say I grew up in a coal mining culture.

My name is Bill Kombol and today I manage a company, Palmer Coking Coal Co., whose name stretches back 80 years to an era when coal was king.

It’s a phrase I adapted for a weekly column I write for the Voice of the Valley, a local newspaper.

When the historical society approached me to write about what the miners’ statue means to me, I was humbled. (more…)

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