The Battle of Blair Mountain: War in the West Virginia Mountains

Written by Joanna Adams Sergent The Reaction to the Assassinations Miners were outraged by the assassinations of Hatfield and Chambers. They understood that the assassins would not face punishment for the crimes. The miners then organized and armed themselves across the state of West Virginia. One source states that the Little Coal River was the […]

Matewan Part Three: The OK Corral of the East and Murder

Written by Joanna Adams Sergent The miners were on strike protesting for better pay, fighting for the right to organize, and better treatment from the operators. Thousands of people are now forced to live in tents in a small area by the Tug River. Conditions there are stable but there are thousands of out-of-work men […]

The Battle of Matewan Part Two: Unrest Begins in the Mining Camps

Written by Joanna Adams Sergent From 1870 through 1888, coal mining towns began to crop up in the Appalachian Mountains. Coal operators then set up a “town system”. They built and owned the town, all of the utilities, the town store, post office, housing, entertainment, roads, and bridges. This system usually falls under Paternalism. This […]

Matewan Part One: The War to Settle Everything

Written by Joanna Adams Sergent To understand what happened at Matewan, one needs to take a serious look at the fractious and violent labor disputes of the time. However, even with the shots no longer ringing out from the two warring families, and the Paint-Cabin Creek Strike had also cooled by this time. There was […]