Appalachia, Blackberry City, coal, crime, deputy sheriff, fire marshal, history, John Hall, Kentucky, Logan Banner, M.C. Kindleberger, Matewan, Mingo County, P.J. Smith, Stone Mountain Coal Company, Tom Davis, Tug Fork, War Eagle, West Virginia, West Virginia Federationist, Williamson
From the Logan Banner of Logan, WV, we find the following story dated 27 May 1921:
The headhouse of the Stone Mountain Coal Company at Matewan, in the heart of the Tug river battle zone, on the West Virginia-Kentucky border, was burned early today, reports received by Major Tom Davis, acting adjutant general on Governor Morgan’s staff, stated.
P.J. Smith, superintendent of the company in Williamson said until he makes an investigation, he could not estimate the amount of damage. The minimum loss, he added, would not probably be less than $25,000.
M.C. Kindleberger, deputy state fire marshal, here to investigate the recent firing of the headhouse at War Eagle, departed for Matewan immediately. Two automobiles containing members of the state constabulary accompanied him. He said he would report to Major Davis.
The Stone Mountain mine has been abandoned by the miners recently, said Superintendent Smith.
Although Chief Deputy Sheriff John Hall gave out the statement that he had made a personal inspection of the fighting area as far east as Blackberry City, and everything was quiet, and that sniping had ceased, the emergency defense organization composed of former service men and other citizens was said by Captain Brockus, of the state police, to be growing. Seventy-two rifles were issued late Saturday night and more have been ordered. In all, said Captain Brockus, several hundred men are under arms prepared for another outbreak. An organization today issued an order temporarily discontinuing the publication of the West Virginia Federationist, a labor paper.
An incident connected with the recent shooting along the Tug river is the reluctance of taxi-cab drivers to take their passengers east of Williamson. Their invariable call at the railroad station to prospective fares is discontinuing.
Source: “Headhouse in Mingo is Burned,” Logan (WV) Banner, 27 May 1921.
To see a coal company headhouse photograph, follow this link: http://wvhistoryonview.org/catalog/wvulibraries:14752