Leadville, CO Mine Accident, Jul 1889


LEADVILLE, July 5.---(Special.)---A miner, whose face is familiar to Leadvilleites, and who was commodly[sic] called "Joe," met with instant death at the Lafayette shaft in Big Evan Gulch at a late hour yesterday afternoon. Joe, with a friend named Lewis Sharling, went up to look at the shaft yesterday with the intension of leasing. The opening of the shaft was covered with some logs and a plank. Both men sat down upon the ends of the logs to converse. After talking a few moments Joe shifted his position in order to explain some point and in so doing seated himself upon the plank which partly covered the shaft. He had scarcely seated himself before the plank broke and he was hurled to the bottom of the shaft a distance of 30 feet. His neck was broken in the fall and his skull literally smashed to a jelly. The remains now lie at the coroner's. Whether he has any relations or not is not known. Joe was about 30 years of age and was a fine looking man. A strange incident in the matter is that of the hundreds who have visited the morgue to-day, nearly all remember his face and call him "Joe," but no one seems to know his first name.

LATER----Deceased was identified this evening by his former employer. His name is Leon Drechateau.

Aspen Weekly Times, Aspen, Co 6 Jul 1889