Detail View: Colorado Coal Project: Life in the coal mine camps of Walsenburg

Collection Name: 
Colorado Coal Project
Title: 
Life in the coal mine camps of Walsenburg
Creator: 
Margolis, Eric, 1947-
Creator: 
McMahan, Ronald L.
Subject: 
Coal mines and mining
Subject: 
Coal miners -- Colorado -- History -- 20th century
Subject: 
Ku Klux Klan (1915- ) -- History -- 20th century
Subject: 
Quality of life -- United States -- History
Subject: 
Walsenburg (Colo.)
Subject: 
Coal miners -- Personal narratives
Subject: 
Martinez, Silverio (Shorty)
Subject: 
Children -- United States -- Social conditions -- 20th century
Description: 
00:00 Biondi Brothers talk about their store 10:00 Other miners talking - no audio 20:00 Kids used to steal watermelons and coal 30:00 How the town was named Walsenburg 40:00 Talking about the bosses, mostly from England, Scottland, and Wales 50:00 Most miners had milk cows and hogs 60:00 Miners were paid in gold or paper "gold backs" 1:01:30 End
Description Type: 
segmentSequence
Description: 
Miners remember various aspects of life in the Walsenburg mine camps. As children they had chores, sold milk or newspapers, and collected and sold junk. For fun they swam in irrigation ditches, played ball, and picked fights with kids from other camps. By 1930 seventeen was the minimum age to work in a mine but many lied about their age, and some companies employed them at age 10 or 12. Later memories are of being cheated by the weighman, miners carrying all their money in their lunch buckets, and bootleg whisky, which was often buried in the ground during the Prohibition. Walsenburg still had something of the Old West. Later the KKK was active and quite powerful. They recall details about Shorty Martinez, Penitent Catholics, and working as cowboys in the summer.
Description Type: 
summary
Publisher: 
University of Colorado Boulder Archives
Contributor: 
Biondi, Mr. (1)
Contributor: 
Biondi, Mr. (2)
Date: 
2/4/1978
Type: 
MovingImage
Format: 
video/mp4
Identifier: 
120-Biondi-Brothers
Language: 
English
Relation: 
116-Biondi-Sporting-Goods
Relation Type: 
relatedTo
Relation href: 
http://cudl.colorado.edu/luna/servlet/s/9n3uj0
Relation: 
117-Biondi-Sporting-Goods
Relation Type: 
relatedTo
Relation href: 
http://cudl.colorado.edu/luna/servlet/s/swlzw8
Relation: 
121-Biondi-Brothers_001
Relation Type: 
relatedTo
Relation href: 
http://cudl.colorado.edu/luna/servlet/s/igskgd
Coverage (Spatial): 
Walsenburg, CO
Coverage (Temporal): 
1900/1960