Ravensdale, WA Coal Mine Explosion, Nov 1915

Ravensdale WASH circa 1910.jpg Ravensdale WASH mine circa 1910.jpg Ravensdale WASH tombstone.jpg Ravensdale WASH mine marker.jpg Ravensdale WASH cemetery.jpg

MINE EXPLODES KILLING 31 MEN 3 ARE INJURED.

RESCUE PARTIES WORK REMOVING TONS OF DEBRIS FROM BODIES AT RAVENSDALE, WASH.

FLAMES FILL WHOLE SHAFT WHEN COAL DUST BLOWS UP.

BODIES ARE SEARED BY FIRE; ENTIRE STRUCTURE SHATTERED BY THE FORCE OF CONCUSSION.

Seattle, Wash., Nov. 17. -- Rescue parties which had been laboring in ninety minute shifts all night were still at work early today endeavoring to recover the bodies of twenty-five men buried under tons of debris in the third level of the Northwestern Improvement Company's coal mine at Ravensdale, thirty-five miles southeast of here. An explosion in the mine yesterday killed thirty-one men and injured three others.
The bodies of six, including Foreman P. J. KANE, were recovered last night, and the rescuers had hopes of reaching two more within a few hours, but the others were so far back in the wreckage-choked level, 1,500 feet underground, that it was feared it would take many hours to reach them.
Reports circulated last night that fire in the mine was delaying the rescuers later were declared to be untrue. The report gained credence because a large cloud of smoke poured out of the main slope when the explosion occurred and from the fact that the bodies had been seared by fire. This was explained, however, as due to the sheet of flame which swept thru the mine when the explosion occurred. The cause of the explosion is still undetermined, altho it is supposed coal dust was ignited by a "windy" shot. Rescuers, who were led by Superintendent W. D. Scott, were unable to reach the third level by the main slope because of the wreckage and had to break their way thru an auxiliary slope.
The force of the explosion tore down timbers and supports all thru the mine and the rescuers had to build new supports as they cleared away the wreckage.
Expert rescue teams from the United States Bureau of Mines station in Seattle and from coal camps on both slopes of the Cascade mountains were rushed to Ravensdale to assist in the rescue work.
After entering the third level, where Foreman KANE'S body was found, the oxygen helmet men announced that there was no doubt that all still in the mine were dead, and the workers devoted themselves to clearing away the debris so they could get to the bodies.
The listing of the Casualties:
JOHN ARNO, miner.
JOE BALDACCI, miner.
JOHN B. CASTAGNIA, laborer.
CHARLES B. DAVIS, pumpman.
P. J. DOWD, shot firer.
JOHN ERRINGTON, lumberman.
JOE GALOB, miner.
NOEL GOODMAN, laborer.
THOMAS J. KANE, mine foreman.
JOSEPH KRAJNOC, motorman.
CHARLES MARTINI, cager.
THOMAS MASHIOKOSKI, laborer.
ROMEO MADAINE, miner.
JOHN MILLER, miner.
LOUIS MINAGLIA, laborer.
EDRIS MORGAN, track layer.
ANGELO MORRIS, miner.
JACK MUNCIE, haulage boss.
DOMINICK NOVARRA, President of local miner's union.
EMIL PAWALLEK, miner.
LOUIS PAZZIOL, miner.
M. PENNACHI, laborer.
JOHN PESTA, laborer.
HOWARD SALTER, laborer.
THOMAS SPECK, motorman.
JACK STOREY, miner.
LORENZO TASAMANTINO, cager.
JOHN TESTA, laborer.
L. THIBAUT, miner.
FRANK WEGHER, miner.
JOE ZGONC, miner
Approximately $124,000, it is said, will be paid from the state industrial insurance fund to the families in the disaster yesterday. The law gives $4,000 for each man, provided he is married, and a lesser amount for single men. Only seven of the thirty-one who lost their lives were single.

Waterloo Evening Courier Iowa 1915-11-17