Detail View: Colorado Coal Project: Interview with Bill Lloyd (introduction: part 2 of 2)

Collection Name: 
Colorado Coal Project
Title: 
Interview with Bill Lloyd (introduction: part 2 of 2)
Creator: 
Margolis, Eric, 1947-
Creator: 
McMahan, Ronald L.
Subject: 
CF&I
Subject: 
Coal mining -- Colorado
Subject: 
Labor disputes -- Colorado
Subject: 
Strikes and lockouts -- Coal mining -- Colorado
Subject: 
Child labor -- Colorado
Subject: 
Coal Strike, Colo., 1913-1914
Subject: 
Coal miners -- Personal narratives
Subject: 
Coal mines and mining
Description: 
William Henry Lloyd, born 1893 in Wales, was then 84. His dad was a coal miner in Wales and in Penn., returned to Britain and then to Lafayette, Colo. Lloyd worked in an uncle's mines (Blue Ribbon and Patfield) and then in southern Colo.: Raus, Rugby, Lester, Trinidad. Bill started work in 1903, trapping in the coal mine called Frisco: 9 cents/hour, 10 hours/day. He learned mining from his dad at Cokedale. By the time he was 16, he ran a motor and drew a "man's pay" of $3.25/day. Before the strike, he didn't like working for CF&I: they required him to shop in the company store, paid him in script, and didn't care whether miners made money. He claims that miners paid the boss for good places to work. He worked at Suffield, driving a mule for Ef Wagstaff, until the big 1913 strike. He moved to Denver and learned automotive skills; later he and his mother moved to Walsenburg during the strike, where she ran a hotel and cooked meals for Mother Jones in jail. He recalls her as a tiny-but-feisty fighter for labor; he followed in her march on the Colorado capitol. Lloyd witnessed the shooting death of striker Lepia in Trinidad, killed by Belcher (who was later shot dead). He knew well both Sheriff Jeff Farr, in Walsenburg, and Shorty Martinez, the cop. At Ludlow, shooting broke out between the militia and the miners on a hogback ridge; Major Lester was killed in town the same day. Lloyd remembers the militia as untrained men. After the strike ended, wages increased from $3.25 to $5.25/day, so Lloyd returned to mining. Lloyd ran the car that took John D. Rockefeller, Jr. thru the Starkville mine, in 1916 or 1917. He recalls happy times in the early coal towns, under "the Rockefeller plan": lots of baseball games and modern houses for the miners. He joined the union in 1909 and left in 1923 -- he was in management positions until his retirement in 1961. He relates details about the Wobbly strike and the death of 6 men at the Columbine. Sheriff Lou Binan warned strikers to stay away from the mine; a couple tried to scale the fence and shooting began. Lloyd's company preferred the UMWA to the Wobblies. Sympathizers to the Wobblies had been placing IWW posters throughout the mines. In 1918 he qualified as fire boss, then as mine foreman; later he became a mine superintendent at Boulder Valley Mine. He continued to socialize with his friends, the miners. Under his leadership, the Puritan mine produced 64,000 tons of coal in month of February, 1928, producing coal for the Denver Post. At one time, he hired 500 men in an afternoon for the Puritan mine. Over time, the mine shifted from 7 days/week, year-round, to 3-4 days/week in winter and only a skeletal crew in summer. In 1932, he moved on to the JackoLantern, Monarch, Ball, Tiger, Pine Gulch and Majestic mines (in his "spare time", while still super at the Monarch mine). He details the design of steel-reinforced concrete dams in the mines to control water. Eventually, oil and gas development led to the decline of the Colorado coal industry (in part because coal couldn't be safely stored). He recounts details of several deaths in the mines. At those times, there were no survivor's benefits, so the miners would take up a collection for the family. In addition to single deaths, Lloyd reports there were 126 killed in Hastings, 13 in Bowen, 56 in Starkville, 13 in Cokedale, and 78 in Delawa. Lloyd discusses miners he knew from Cokedale and Boncarbo. He recalls racial and ethnic groups getting along well and living in mixed communities. He recalls CF&I field days in Trinidad -- lots of games, bands, floats in parades. He describes his wife's life, as spouse of a superintendent among wives of union miners. The women often gathered at parties and excursions to movies. Lloyd now receives black lung benefits.
Description Type: 
summary
Description: 
Video interview resumes on p. 39 of pdf Lloyd1 10 min: He describes the work of mine doctors; deaths in the mine = p. 45 of pdf 20 min: Collections to aid families of miners, killed in the mine = p. 51 of pdf 30 min: He describes lack of segregation by race in mining camps = p. 55 of pdf 40 min: He describes women's lives in coal camps; beginning of the Rockefeller plan = p. 60 of pdf 55 min: Memories of 1913-1914 strike; baseball teams in the camps; his current pension = p. 70 of pdf
Description Type: 
SegmentSequence
Publisher: 
University of Colorado Boulder Archives
Contributor: 
Lloyd, Bill
Date: 
5/18/1978
Type: 
MovingImage
Format: 
video/mp4
Identifier: 
167-Lloyd
Language: 
English
Relation: 
narv_coloradoCoal_transLloyd2
Relation Type: 
relatedTo
Relation: 
168-Lloyd
Relation Type: 
relatedTo
Relation: 
narv_coloradoCoal_transLloyd1
Relation Type: 
derivedFrom
Relation: 
166-Lloyd
Relation Type: 
relatedTo
Coverage (Spatial): 
Colorado -- Huerfano County
Coverage (Spatial): 
Colorado -- Boulder County
Coverage (Spatial): 
Colorado -- Las Animas County
Coverage (Temporal): 
1893/1978