Explosion in the Ferguson Mine


The Washington Penna, Daily Reporter
November 21, 1903

TWELEVE DEAD IN MINE DISASTER
Result of Explosion in the Ferguson Mine.
Eight Miners were injured
     Connellsville, Pa. Nov. 20—Twelve men are dead, one is missing, three 
are so seriously injured that they may not recover and five others are 
less seriously injured, as the result of an explosion on Saturday 
evening at the Ferguson mine of the Dunbar Furnace company. The list of 
causalities is as follows:
THE DEAD
William Foster, aged 40; leaves a family Joseph Oelan, aged 27, married; wife and children in old country. Andrew Kotsor, aged 30, married. John Dravis, aged 29, single. Peter Sukorn?, aged 34, married; family in old country. Michael Smidra?. Aged 30, single. Charles Vegas, aged 23, single. Wheatley Foster, aged 25, single. Michael Haverstack married; mine driver; wife and children in old country. James McGurk, aged 18. Michael Sekor, aged 21, single. Hejack Boleslaf, about 35 years old; family in Austria.
THE MISSING
Michael Benny, about 30 years old, married.
THE INJURED
John Foster, 23 years old, son of William Foster, badly burned; death hourly expected. Frederick Longden, injuries not serious; at Cottage State Hospital. John McGurk, father of James McGurk, who was killed, injuries not serious; was taken home. Michael Kovchick, 35 years old; married; injuries not serious; taken home. Michael Marchlek, 30 years old; married; badly burned all over the body; at the hospital. Adam Linka, 35 years old, married; family in Austria; badly burned, but expected to recover, at the hospital. Joseph Dovlak, slightly injured. John Patrick, seriously injured; not expected to recover; is at the hospital. All of the victims of the explosion except the Fosters, McGurks and Longden were foreigners. Of the dead Hejack Boleslaf was one of the two taken from the mine alive, but he died this afternoon at the Cottage State hospital, to where he was taken. Foster, also rescued alive, died at midnight. Immense crowds, who saw practically nothing, came from the surrounding country to Ferguson today. Every trolley car on the Pittsburg, McKeesport and Connellsville railway was taxed. People came from the north, as far as Greensburg and from the south from Fairchance, and some came in the trains from even a greater distance. The bodies of the dead showed the results of what the survivors said had happened. All the latter could tell was: “There was an awful roar, a rush of air, a blinding flash and then unconsciousness.”
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