Hellraisers Journal: Women and Children Gather at Scene of Naomi Mine Explosion at Fayette City, Pennsylvania

The women and children are crying continually,
and stare with hope at the
seemingly fruitless work of rescue.
The Pittsburg Press
December 2, 1907


Hellraisers Journal, Thursday December 5, 1907
Fayette City, Pennsylvania – Many Dead in Naomi Mine Explosion

An explosion Sunday night at the Naomi Coal Mine, followed by fumes of poisonous gas which soon filled the mine, led to the death of at least 27 miners, with some saying that the death toll could reach as high as 68.

From The Pittsburg Press of December 2, 1907:

Naomi Mine Disaster, Fayette Cty PA, Ptt Prs, Dec 2, 1907

The death list will be at least 46. Their chance of ever getting out alive is hopelessly slim.

Those in the mine, with the names of the Americans given first, are:

Naomi Mine Disaster the dead, Fayette Cty PA, Ptt Prs, Dec 2, 1907

The shaft and workings of the mine which were wrecked by an explosion of the deadly black damp shortly after 9 o’clock last night, are filled with debris and gigantic masses of coal and slate.

Through this the rescuers are slowly digging their way, but it is announced by the chiefs in charge of the work that it will be late this evening, at least, before the bodies of the entombed and almost certainly dead men can be reached.

The air-fans have been working steadily, but even the strong currents of oxygen they generate are not sufficient to force out the gas, which is believed to have permeated every section of the mine.

The number of men entombed is placed at various figures, the United Coal Co. officials declaring that not more than 27 men were working in the veins last night, while others standing about, many of whom are familiar with the depths of the mine and the number of men employed, place the number as high as 68.


John Gilchrist, a night motorman on one of the mine coal cars, declares that 66 men were at work when the catastrophe descended upon them and snuffed out their lives. Others about the shaft, included in the immense throng watching the rescuers, say there were 68 men at work and declare the company is trying to minimize the loss of life and damage to property.

Most of the entombed men are known to be foreigners and that many were single and strangers in the locality. They resided principally at Arnold City and the women gathered about the scene of the disaster attest that they had scarcely any relatives in this country…


The women and children are crying continually, and stare with hope at the seemingly fruitless work of rescue…

Naomi Mine Disaster Waiting, Fayette Cty PA, Ptt Prs, Dec 2, 1907


The Pittsburg Press
(Pittsburg, Pennsylvania)
-Dec 2, 1907

See also:
Note: the final official death toll was 34.

United States Mine Rescue Association
All Mine Disasters in the United States-1907

United Coal Company, Naomi Mine Explosion
Fayette City, Pennsylvania, December 1, 1907
No. Killed – 34, scroll down for list of names

Daily Independent
(Monessen, Pennsylvania)
-Dec 2, 1907
“Death Reaps Harvest”
-Dec 3, 1907
“Naomi Gives Up 26 Charred Victims”
“Miners Resume Gruesome Task ‘Mid Sickening Gloom and Death”
“Naomi Mine Disaster Due Primarily to Negligence”
-Dec 4, 1907

Naomi Mine, Fayette City, Washington Twp., Fayette County, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
A Tribute to the Coal Miners that mined the Bituminous Coal seams of the Naomi Mine, Fayette County, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
-Compiled & Edited by Raymond A. Washlaski, Historian, Editor
-Ryan P. Washlaski, Technical Editor


The Avondale Mine Disaster – Paul Clayton
Written for The Avondale Mine Disaster (near Plymouth PA)
of Sept 6, 1869, and also fits here.

They’re in their graves till the last day,
Their widows may bewail,
And the orphans’ cries they rend the skies
All around through Avondale!

Dream of Miner’s Child – Johnson Mountain Boys