On December 6, 1907, more than 350 miners died in an explosion in a connected series of coal mines in Monongah, West Virginia. It remains the worst mining accident in United States history.The huge explosion destroyed most ventilation shafts and timber supports in the mines. Few miners were able to climb to freedom, and rescuers quickly fell ill due to the mixture of “blackdamp” and “whitedamp” fumes. Blackdamp is a mix of carbon dioxide and nitrogen, while whitedamp contains carbon monoxide.Most victims of the Monongah Mining Disaster were recent immigrants to the United States. The overwhelming majority of workers were Italian and Eastern European. Many immigrants were specifically from the region of Molise, Italy. In 2007, the 100th anniversary of the event, local officials from Molise presented the town of Monongah with a bell to commemorate the disaster.
Term Part of Speech Definition Encyclopedic Entry blackdamp Noun
air that is low in oxygen and high in carbon dioxide due to an explosion in a mine. Also called chokedamp.
dark, solid fossil fuel mined from the earth.
to honor an event on a specific date.
to ruin or make useless.
terrible and damaging event.
violent outburst; rejection, usually of gases or fuel
vapor from a substance that usually has an identifiable odor.
person who moves to a new country or region.
place dug in the earth where ores are extracted.
process of extracting ore from the Earth.
new or happening lately.
any area on Earth with one or more common characteristics. Regions are the basic units of geography.
Encyclopedic Entry: region rescue Verb
to free or save from danger.
wood in an unfinished form, either trees or logs.
movement or circulation of fresh air in a closed environment. Also called air circulation.
person or organization that suffers from the act of another.
toxic mixture of gases, including carbon monoxide, created by the combustion of coal.