Tombstone Tuesday – The Immigrant Miners of Dawson, New Mexico

One hundred years ago today, on October 22, 1913, a massive coal mine explosion occurred in Dawson, New Mexico at the Stag Canyon Fuel Company’s Mine No. 2.  Today’s “Tombstone Tuesday” pays tribute to some of the immigrant miners who perished on that horrific day.  This story was a bit heart-wrenching after going through the immigration records and wondering had these men known what was ahead would they have come to America after all.

In looking for the grave records for that fateful day (what little there are), I found name after name listing October 22, 1913 as the date of death.  Above that would be a notation regarding birth as “Unknown”.  Most were buried with only a Miners Cross and no grave stone.  A memorial has been erected in the cemetery listing the names of the dead.  The list of immigrants killed included those from Greece, Italy, Russia, Hungary, Austria, Slavic nations, Ireland, Mexico and Bohemia.

miners cross

 

NOTE:  This article is being re-purposed and enhanced, complete with footnotes and sources, and will be featured in the March 2018 issue of Digging History Magazine.  Purchase your copy at the magazine store (Monthly Issues) or purchase a subscription.

 

 

6 Comments

  1. Very interesting. Good Job!

    Reply
  2. Well, in hindsight most of would do something different the decisions we make daily. There was a strong inclination that the grass was greener over here and they would have to overcome some obstacles to achieve their goals. Even though they passed, a seed was planted to have a better life for the generations that would follow.

    Reply
  3. Badiali Antonio was born in S.Dalmazio (Monfestino) the 29/03/1890 from Badiali Sante and Cassanelli Vittoria. He was married with Aramini Diomira. He had a daughter named Natalizia
    (born 08/5/1912). Just one year later he left for America. 6 month later he arrived to Ellis Island he died in stag canyon n.2 mine.
    He was Brother of Badiali Celeste born in S. Dalmazio 12/03/1888
    he was Brother in law of Giordani Umberto born in Monfestino 06/12/1882
    he was cousin of Gorzanelli Attilio born in S. Dalmazio 01/12/1896
    he was related with Mesini Marino born in Monfestino 24/08/1887
    They all died in the same day: 22nd of October 1913 in the explosion of Dawson mine

    Reply
    • Thank you so much for the information. That was a fascinating (and heart-wrenching) article to write but I learned so much about immigrants and their sacrifices to come to America.

      Reply
  4. fascinating article. Recently while doing genealogy research I realized that my step mom was born in Dawson in 1922. I had been there visiting on a few occasions over the years but didnt know it was her birth place. Does anyone know if there is a record of names of the men who died in the 1923 disaster?

    Reply

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