Help preserve the history of the coal industry

By Kathy Addams McKee

Dear Editor:

With the slowdown of our coal industry in the valley, my heart aches. Then I hear the trains go by and it brightens my day. In the future we might not have any mines here so I have a plan to preserve the history of them. Representing the Hotchkiss-Crawford Historical Society, I am trying to compile stories, memories, newspaper clippings, pictures and other items that would pertain to the story of the area mining industry. But I will need YOUR help! If you or any members of your family worked at a mine(s), would you take the time to let me know the story? I would like to know who in your family worked at a mine, which one(s), for how long, what your job was, memories (good or bad), the camaraderie you had with your fellow miners, accidents, performance records, equipment used and so on. Pictures would be appreciated. They could be scanned or copied and returned to you.

Claudia King and I compiled an Arcadia book North Fork Valley and we were able to touch on the history of some of the mines like the Bear, Bowie and Hawks Nest. I know there is so much more to tell. You can reach me at 872-3366, mail at 357 Ash Lane, Hotchkiss or Also, if you have a lot of info, an interview at our museum could be arranged. Groups of friends would be fun to sit around the table and tell your memories. I know there are a lot of wonderful stories out there and I want to preserve them for future generations.

Kathy Addams McKee