ELLENSBURGH LOCALIZER

May 14, 1892


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A TERRIFIC EXPLOSION

Roslyn People in Great Suspense - The Whole Town Mourning FORTY-FOUR MEN KILLED Nearly All of Them Were Married or Leave Dependent Relatives - Appeals for Assistance
An explosion occurred in the coal mine No. 4 at Roslyn, on Tuesday, the 10th inst. It is not
known at this writing the precise number in the mine when the explosion occurred. T. B. WRIGHT,
clerk of the superior court, had a brother in the mine, but his fate is not known. The explosion
was a terrific one. Its force may be judged by the damage done 5,000 feet from the place where
the men were at work. There were fourteen cars on the track at the mouth of the tunnel. Some
of the cars were demolished and others driven with great force down the track. There were from
fifty to seventy-five men in the mine. There is little reason to believe that any of them have
escaped being killed. It is the first accident of the kind that has occurred in any of the coal
mines in this part of the state. Women who had husbands working in the mines were frantically
rushing about the mouth of the tunnel, eager to learn the fate of those dear to them. The scene
presented was appalling to the extreme.
A LATER REPORT
On Tuesday, the 10th, the explosion took place. By 12 o'clock that night, fourteen blackened
and mutilated bodies were taken out. They had to be washed before they were recognizable. The
railroad station has been improvised as an undertaker's shop. Nearly all the men in the slope
were men of family, because the place was recognized as dangerous, and for this reason needed
careful men. Many of the families are left destitute, and children of tender years are among the bereaved.
Forty-eight persons are known to have been in the mine at the time, and there is little doubt
but that all have perished. The slope in which the men were at work is a new one, and runs in a southerly direction for a
distance of 2,800 feet from the opening. The following is a list of the fourteen taken from the
mine, and is from the Tacoma News: John BONE Ben OSTLIFF Harry CAMPBELL George MOSES G. POLLARD Pruss LOVING David REES, Jr. John MATTES Thomas BRENNAN Robert SPOTTS William HOGUE Joseph LEWIS Thomas HOLMES Thomas REES, Sr. The outpour of deadly gas from the tunnel was too great to permit a search being prosecuted
for any length of time. Every ten minutes relief gangs were sent in and the work was kept up in
this way until the foreman, George HARRISON, counseled that it was too risky to continue the
search, as to remain would be to suffocate from the deadly fumes. At 12 o'clock on the night of
the 10th, the rescue was abandoned. There are many instances of great bereavement. George MOSES left a boy 8 or 8 years old; no relatives. OSTLIFF left five young children. David and Thomas REES, father and son, sole support, left a family of ten children to
mother's care. The CUSTWORTHS, father and son, leave surviving a family of ten. A married son said to me
with tears in his eyes: "Bob was the best kind of a boy. Now he's gone, there's no telling
what'll become of the babes." Robert BROOKS had just arrived with his family from Streator, Ill. They are destitute. William HAGUE leaves mother, invalid, and crippled sister without support. R. FORSYTHE, father, George, son, leaves family solely dependent on them. Winston STEELE, father of the boy who escaped death, leaves a family in straightened
circumstances. Thomas BRENNAN only went to work yesterday after three months idleness; family of nine
children destitute; live in Ronald, a mile away. Charles PALMER leaves a wife and children unprovided for. Frank HANNAH, Dominick BIANCO, and Rev. G. W. WILLIAMS, colored, are missing. The bodies were taken in improvised dead wagons to the town hall, where they were deposited
on long tables side by side, that they might be viewed and identified. The distressing scenes
of the afternoon were re-enacted at the town hall, the women coming to thither to claim their
dead and mourn them. (very graphic injuries described)... Three of them were apparently uninjured.
These three had been found lying in the fifth level, east of the main slope, flat upon their
faces where they had thrown themselves to escape the baleful effects of the after damp, only to
be asphyxiated by it.

LOCAL ITEMS

Andrew JOHNSON of Wenatchee has taken the oath of allegiance, and is now a citizen. There is one restaurant, we have been informed, in Wenatchee that is feeding 400 persons
daily, and still they come. The Ruby Miner is under new control, George HURLEY vacating the tripod. Two boys, Willie PICKWELL and George HENTON, Jr., were wrestling on Thursday, and in falling
the latter had his arm dislocated. Peter McCALLUM has moved his merchandise stock from Cle Elum to the Swauk. It will be a
convenience for the Swauk settlers and miners. The state for Wenatchee went out loaded on Thursday. The travel in that direction is
increasing all the while and Wenatchee is booming. Lyman HARRELL left for Wenatchee this week. He has an interest in the townsite, which has
been settled. A new mineral deposit has been discovered near Orondo, on the Columbia river. The ore is said
to be free milling and assays $13 to the ton. Some discoveries have been made on the Entiat, a stream that empties into the Columbia river
some 12 miles above the Wenatchee, and on the same side of the Columbia. Evans STRANDE and Perry CLEMAN, west side farmers, have more water from the incessant rains
than they have use for. Ed KING and Conductor CLUSE started on a prospecting trip this week to the Swauk. The road
was so heavy that they had to abandon their buckboard at Horse Canyon and take it afoot. The
last heard from them they were at SASSA's on the upper Swauk. Harry CRUGER, clerk in the Hotel Horton, has for some time made himself so obnoxious to a
lady guest of the Horton that last week Mr. STEINER, the landlord, had to discharge him, and he
soon afterward left for Tacoma. David CHOAT arrived here from Ruby this week. He reports times are quite lively at Ruby and
Loomiston. On the return of J. B. TONKINS from Portland, active work will begin on the Arlington
and First Thought mines. Mr. TONKINS is superintendent of both. Mr. CHOAT will return to Ruby
the last of this week or the first of next. James E. STONE of Colockem came over the mountains from his ranch on the Wenatchee road on
Monday. He informed us that the roads on the mountain are very soft... The Yakima river has risen 4 feet within the past week and the water is quite muddy. The
ground is pretty well saturated with water at this time... The frequent heavy rains in this
month are without a precedent in the history of the county.

ROSLYN

The coal miners at Roslyn have had a hard streak of luck for the last year. Owing to the
light demand for coal, their working time was limited to two days in each week. This afforded
them but a scant living, and required rigid economy to live at all. Many of those who had no
families left for other parts, but the families who had their own houses and could not sell them
had to remain, and were forced to accept the situation. The large number of ships coming to the
Coast to load grain for the United Kingdom brought large quantities of coal from Great Britian.
This coal was sold at such prices that there was no demand for the home-dug article.... the
mines, except one, have been closed for quite a while.

SCHOOL REPORT

Report of Ellensburgh Public Schools for the Month ending April 29, 1892: Whole number enrolled.......315 Average number belonging....273 Average daily attendance....255 Cases of Tardiness..........116 Cases of Truancy............ 3 Teachers: Mrs. O. A. TIFFANY grade 1 69 students Miss Minnie LIVESAY grade 2&3 44 students Miss Anna SALADY grade 4 55 students Miss Maud STERLING grade 5 43 students Miss Lydia CHARLTON grade 6 33 students O. A. TIFFANY grade 7&8 29 students In Model School 42 students

PERSONAL MENTION

Mrs. Horace B. THIELSON left Tuesday for a short visit to Portland. Mrs. I. HINMAN, accompanied by her three children, left on Thursday's train for an extended
visit to Forest Grove, Or. Mrs. PALMER and daughter left Ellensburgh Wednesday morning for Wenatchee where she intends
to open a restaurant. Mrs. HOGUE, accompanied by her son Chester, is expected here the latter part of the week to
visit her brother, W. R. ABRAMS, of this city. E. T. WILSON returned from a trip to the Sound country last week. He says he saw places
while he was gone that were duller than Ellensburgh. Alexander RONALD, after a residence of five years, has resigned his position. It is not
outlined what will be his future occupation. Mr. J. D. CAROTHERS, arrived here last week from a trip to Eastern Oregon and Eastern
Washington.

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