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Title: The Coming of Coal
Author: Bruere, Robert W.
Language: English
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                 [Illustration: COAL FIELDS OF THE WORLD]

                            THE COMING OF COAL


                             ROBERT W. BRUÈRE


                               Prepared for
                     The Educational Committee of the
                Commission on the Church and Social Service
                                  of the
                          Federal Council of the
                            Churches of Christ
                                in America

                            =ASSOCIATION PRESS=

                       NEW YORK: 347 MADISON AVENUE


                   COPYRIGHT, 1922, BY ROBERT W. BRUÈRE



This book, important in subject and scientific in method, appears under
religious auspices for a very definite reason. The Educational Committee
of the Federal Council of Churches has sought to find concrete
expression for those Christian principles which are too often confined
to abstract statement. Christian ethics are well understood in theory.
There is need now for a science of Christian conduct through which we
may realize ethical ideals in our working life.

Because of its basic character and its present importance in the public
mind the coal industry offers a field for this endeavor. Hence the
Educational Committee presents through the medium of the Press of the
Young Men's Christian Association, this book, addressed particularly to
the people of the churches of America.

                                         THE EDUCATIONAL COMMITTEE.

                             TABLE OF CONTENTS

  CHAPTER                                                        PAGE

      I. Challenge of Power                                         1
     II. Coming of Coal                                             4
    III. Drama of Civilization                                     10
     IV. Coal in America                                           22
      V. Awakening of the Miners                                   34
     VI. Struggle for Organization                                 50
    VII. Rise of Democracy                                         66
   VIII. Rivals of Coal                                            78
     IX. The Technical Revolution                                  90
      X. The Strait Gate                                          102
         Bibliography                                             114
         Index                                                    120

                                CHAPTER I

                         THE CHALLENGE OF POWER

Scientists tell us that the energy poured by the sun on the Desert of
Sahara in a single day exceeds by fourfold the energy stored in the
annual production of all the coal fields in the world. They dream of a
time when the radiant energy of the sun will be captured and turned to
the uses of man. Then the wheels of our myriad machines will spin with
the sun and the stars. In the soft whirr of their motors men will hear
the music of the spheres.

When that time comes, will it signal the triumph of man's will over
nature, the end of the brute struggle with hunger? Will it find our
ideals of cooperation, service, and brotherhood ripe for practical
application? Or will it mark a new intensification of the exploitation
of man by men, of the clash of groups for power, of international wars
for possession? Shall we have the spiritual capacity to match our
technical achievement? Shall we know what we mean when we pray Thy
Kingdom Come on Earth as IT IS in Heaven?

That prayer was old on the lips of men when a comparable gift was
discovered. During ages without number the shifting seas and the
slow-moving mountains had pressed down the sun's vintage in the coal
beds of the earth. Less than two centuries ago the steam engine
harnessed coal to the looms of England. With coal came iron and steel,
and with steel and steam came the industrial revolution, its factories
massed in cities, its railroads weaving manufacturing centers together,
its steel ships and cables and telegraph wires unfolding and integrating
the economic life of the world. In western Europe especially it
converted an age-long economic deficit into an economic surplus. For the
first time in human history it brought the possibility of the good life
to every man's door. But it found men spiritually unprepared. The
ancient bread hunger was still upon them. As in the tribal days men
warred upon one another for food, so now they warred upon one another
for coal and the incredible spawn of coal. For coal means food,
clothing, houses, ships, railroads, newspapers, chemicals, and guns.
With the coming of coal and coal-driven machinery the earth and the
fullness thereof was unlocked for the service of man. There was not only
the possibility of the good life for each but also of a noble,
well-ordered civilization for all. But instead of establishing
civilization on foundations of mutual aid, service, and brotherhood, men
turned their cities into shambles of childhood, poverty was embittered,
civil strife in mine, mill, and factory became endemic, wars on an
unprecedented scale engaged nations and groups of nations. The World War
and the famine and widespread desolation that followed gave tragic
evidence of our spiritual unpreparedness.

Yet it would be as falsely sentimental to set up a golden age as a
heightening background for the evils that came with coal as it would be
to ignore or gloze over those evils. Economic insecurity, poverty,
disease, wars, and blighted childhood are as old as human existence. The
world is a better, richer, more vibrant, and thrilling abode since coal
came than it was before. The indictment of our coal age can be justly
based, not upon what it has destroyed, but rather upon what it has
missed,--upon its spiritually blind, its bungling and inadequate use of
a gift more magnificent than any allotted to man since grain was first
sown to the harvest and ground at a mill. An indictment that involves
all mankind is hardly an indictment at all. It is rather a confession of
our common human limitations, a recognition of the tragic circumstances
of our spiritual growth. It will be answered when we as individuals and
nations and groups of nations, set ourselves to turn the wisdom of
experience to account in building a civilization worthy of a world that
moves through infinite space with the sun and the marching stars.

                                CHAPTER II

                            THE COMING OF COAL

The making of all the coal in the earth began when the sun hurled the
earth into its orbit. Before there were vertebrates in the sea, or
animals, or plants of any kind on land--fully one hundred and fifty
million years ago--low foldings and depressions appeared on the earth
where the Appalachian Mountains now are. Following the lines of what has
become the Atlantic, vast ridges appeared. Ages later swamp forests grew
in the intervening valleys, bearing and shedding the spores and thick,
somber leaves still traceable in the lower carboniferous strata. In that
time, a shallow sea covered what is now the Mississippi Valley in whose
sludgy shoals more swamp forests grew. Along the inland seas and ocean
beaches of Europe and Asia, the tides, the winds, and rains slowly
spread the clay for still other swamp forests. When the lush plant life
of the carboniferous age came out of the marshy ooze, it spread along
the edges of the land, crept up the long estuaries between the rising
and sinking hills and on into the landlocked seas. The rocks beneath and
about these carboniferous forests rose and sank age through age, cycle
through cycle. When they sank slowly, tangled morasses formed; when they
sank rapidly, the inrushing water killed the plants and buried them
under a covering of silt. When the rocky strata rose again, the swamp
forests crept back to their old places, and again bore and shed their
fernlike leaves, their spores and great scarred trunks upon the oozy
bottom now scores or hundreds of feet above the level on which their
ancestors had stood ages before.

Then, some seventy million years ago, a geographical revolution
convulsed what is now northeastern America. The great trough running
parallel to the Atlantic, where swamp forests had grown and died and
grown again, gave way under the ever-increasing load. The ridges at its
sides pressed in upon it, crumpled it into giant folds, broke it, pushed
its shattered edges out in mighty over-thrusts, released molten rock to
flow up and over its torn surface. The whole titanic mass was racked and
twisted with pressure and heat until what had been a slowly subsiding
sea-bottom, covered with decaying swamp vegetation, rose on the
shoulders of the newborn Appalachian Mountains, then a lofty range of
clean, stark peaks stretching from Newfoundland to Arkansas,--two
thousand miles.

And with this great geographical revolution, the work of making coal in
eastern North America was finished. From the softest bituminous to the
hardest anthracite, that work was done.

But in other parts of the world, the dense carboniferous forests
continued to grow for another fifty or more million years. In the
shallows of the Mississippi Valley, on the shores of the island that is
now Colorado, the coal plants grew and died with the seasonal march of
the sun. In parts of Europe, Russia, and China, coal continued to form.

And then came another geographical revolution, some twenty million years
ago, that raised up the Rockies and the Andes along the western border
of the Americas, tore and twisted and upturned the rocks of Europe and
Asia, until with the exception of a few odd pockets where small swamp
forests lived on for a time, the coal making of the whole earth was

Twenty million years ago, all the coal we have or shall have had been
packed away beneath the ribs of the earth, in seams varying in height
from sixty feet to the thickness of a blade of grass. In many places the
flat layers in which it was first deposited had been thrown into
overlapping folds. Some of it had been subjected to comparatively little
heat and to the pressure only of the rocky strata above it; this is the
bituminous, which is still rich in oils, gas, tar--unreleased volatile
matter. Some had been crushed by the weight of uplifted mountains,
roasted, fused, and burned by molten lava and volcanic flame; this is
anthracite, which is almost pure carbon and ash. Some had been exposed
to greater pressure still, to intenser heat; this is graphite, which can
no longer be burned at all.

The distribution of coal in the world by quality and quantity has been,
next to climate and the fertility of the soil, the physical fact of most
decisive importance in the history of modern civilization. For countless
ages coal lay practically unused in the earth. Then, sometime between
1750 and 1760, an intricate interlocking of circumstances set coal to
rule the world, not through new discoveries of coal itself but rather
through improvements in spinning and weaving machinery which made
possible the massing of large numbers of spinners and weavers for
large-scale production if power could be found to drive the new machines
for them. The steam engine had already been invented, but it was still a
tentative thing, a primitive type, wondered at and experimented with.
Coal had been used, but only in a few favored spots where it cropped
out on the earth's surface, or was washed ashore by the sea, and then
only as a domestic fuel. It was at the call of the master weavers and
spinners of England that the steam engine was set to run the machines;
then to furnish a blast so that coal might be used to cheapen the
smelting of iron and steel so that more machines might be made; then to
pump out the deepening mines so that more and more power to keep the
machines running might be won. Steam raising was coal's first great play
for power and it is the work through which it still holds its industrial
supremacy. Between 1800 and 1900 coal-driven engines multiplied until by
the end of the century they were producing energy equivalent to seventy
million horse-power; during the first twenty years of the twentieth
century, their power-producing capacity more than doubled. So coal
wrought the industrial revolution, the greatest revolution in all human
history, which transformed social and economic life as radically as the
geographical revolution transformed the earth's surface.

"It introduced a new race of men," writes H. de B. Gibbins, "men who
work with machinery instead of with their hands, who cluster together in
cities instead of spreading over the land, men who trade with those of
other nations as readily as with those of their own town, men whose
workshops are moved by the great forces of nature and whose market is no
longer the city or country but the world itself."

Measured by the crude standards of gross wealth and numbers, the people
of the earth have flourished mightily since the dominion of coal began.
The aggregate wealth of the world has increased to fabulous proportions.
The average expectation of life among Western peoples has doubled.
Between 1800 and 1910 the world's population rose from approximately
640,000,000 to 1,616,000,000. The population of England, which had
increased only fifteen per cent from 1651 to 1751, increased two hundred
per cent during the next century. Between 1816 and 1910, the population
of France increased fifty per cent, of Germany three hundred per cent,
of the United States seventeen hundred per cent.

Moreover the drive of coal's energy immensely stimulated men's inventive
faculties. It transformed Kay's "flying shuttle" and Hargreaves'
"spinning jenny" from clever toys into instruments of large-scale
production, the crude steam engines of Newcomen and Watt into the great
modern locomotive and the turbine engine; it made possible the
large-scale production of telegraph wires and ocean cables, the cylinder
press and typesetting machines, the electrical dynamo, the
internal-combustion engine, the aeroplane, and even the space-ranging
modern telescope. It lifted the veil from the seven seas, broke down the
physical barriers between the peoples of the earth, forged the steel
framework of national and international government. The commercial and
political primacy which England held for more than one hundred and fifty
years rested upon her abundant fields of easily accessible coal. The
cosmic energy flowing out from her mines spread her trade and her
surplus population to the four corners of the earth and made her
triumphant over Spain and Holland--nations poor in coal. The coal of
Westphalia, associated with the iron ores of Lorraine, welded the States
of Germany into the empire of the latter nineteenth century and hurled
her green-grey armies across her frontiers in the mad adventure of 1914.
The vast, rich coal fields of North America have transformed the United
States from an agricultural appanage of Europe into the foremost
manufacturing and commercial nation in the world. The future of Russia
lies largely in the coal fields of the Donetz basin. The imperfectly
surveyed coal and ore fields of China and Siberia are probably the
strongest of the magnets drawing the Powers into the problem of the
Pacific. Coal and the continuing industrial revolution are still shaping
the destiny of mankind.

But in the history of the human race the fact of transcending
significance is the presence in man of instincts, emotions, mind,
reason, will, conscious hunger, and conscious love of one's
neighbor,--all the constituents of that personality of supreme worth
whose ceaseless struggle for mastery over the forces of nature, for
escape from hunger, want, and war into a world of plenty, beauty, mutual
aid, and service is the epic of civilization. The value of coal, as of
all material things, finds its true measure not in numbers or
horse-power units, but in its effect upon the soul of man, the fullness
of opportunity enjoyed by each individual for self-realization and
service, the progress of the race toward brotherhood. The ultimate
appraisal of the coal age will be determined by the issue of the
struggle between bread hunger and love in the soul of man--the struggle
between his acquisitive instinct and his growing consciousness of kind.

                                CHAPTER III

                         THE DRAMA OF CIVILIZATION

Coal embodies our chance of a world civilization. It is the material
form in which the possibility of peace and ease, beauty and learning,
cooperation and brotherhood, have come to the human race.

Before coal was harnessed to the looms of England, before the stored
energy of the sun replaced hand labor at the wheels and gears of her
newly invented machines, there was no such thing as a world
civilization. There was indeed nothing to base a world civilization
upon, for civilization implies leisure consciously to cooperate with
other people, to make life not merely endurable but beautiful and
pleasant as well, leisure to subordinate the instinct to acquire to the
instinct to enjoy, the acquisitive instinct to the consciousness of
kind--and the race as a whole had its entire attention focussed on the
effort to get enough food and clothing and shelter so that it would live
and not die. For only as the acquisitive instinct was dominant and
successful could men survive either singly or in groups, before the
coming of coal.

The limits of civilization were primarily the mechanical limitations of
man's ability to produce. So long as his only ways to drive machinery
were by wind and water, the strength of domesticated animals, and his
own brawn, it was almost impossible for him to accumulate sufficient
reserves of food and clothing so that instead of thinking what he
should eat and what he should put on, he could think a little of how to
make life good. And whenever by some fortunate chance a group of men did
get together a small hoard, parallel with the growth of each tiny
surplus grew the hatred of the outside groups who wished to possess it,
and the need to defend it by force. So that when here and there through
the centuries pocketed civilizations did arise, they were civilizations
perpetually armed for defence and with the sword in their hands. And
though the spirit of man in such places as India and Egypt, in China,
Persia, Palestine, Greece, Carthage, Rome, and the free Italian cities,
as soon as the pressure was removed ever so little, did flower into
religion and art and science, these favored oases were surrounded by
crowding, hungry multitudes who pressed in and in till at last every one
of these was overwhelmed.

Before the coming of coal man had to satisfy his longing for peace and
knowledge and companionship through his dreams. These have come down to
us in the legends of India and Israel, China, Greece, and our own Nordic
ancestors which perpetually play about the fabulous treasure--the Golden
Fleece, the land of milk and honey, the Volsung's miraculous
hoard--pathetic symbols of plenty, liberation, and the possibility of
brotherhood. But until coal came there was no way to make these dreams
come true. For survival was only to the strong, or to the cunning, or to
those who were willing to grow fat on the leanness of others, and every
respite from the basic business of keeping alive was extravagantly paid
for either by oneself or another--before coal came.

But with the coming of coal there rose the possibility of producing more
than enough to keep everybody alive. A tireless bond servant had been
given to the race whose power grew as it was called on, until now in
the United States where coal is used most indefatigably, each family has
the equivalent of thirty human servants, whose use does not need to
involve the exploitation of man by man. For the first time there is the
possibility of all having enough,--of a world surplus on which to base

It was too much to expect that this possibility should be understood by
a race which had never before got further than to see that if their
family, their town, their nation, was to have ease and plenty, it must
be quick to get as much of the world's store of food and goods as it
could,--and to acquire them in spite of the fact that the other groups,
who were hot after them also, might perish if they did not get their
share. They did not see that with the coming of coal the supply was
practically unlimited, and so it was not man's sense of brotherhood but
his acquisitive instinct, checked and balked for ages, that first found
channels of release when coal came.

After the coming of coal this acquisitive instinct expanded with cosmic
force. For the first time in history, men and nations thrilled with the
manifest possibility of their escape from the ancient menace of hunger
into a world of measureless plenty. In their greedy rush for possession,
men within nations trampled one another under foot, and nations girded
themselves for world dominion. And as wealth flowed into the village,
the town, and the nation, all men exulted, those who themselves had
nothing as well as those who grew rich. For famine still hovered beyond
the horizon, and the very presence in the community of an economic
surplus, by whomever owned, gave all men a sense of security as though
at last they had won the miraculous hoard of their dreams, through the
coming of coal.

It was inevitable that in this cumulative drive of the acquisitive
instinct with the long-sought surplus almost in sight, the attitude of
mind established and glorified during the ages when war was the common
alternative to hunger, should carry over into factories and mines. The
methods of war,--the ruthless sacrifice of part of the community for the
benefit of the rest,--were the only methods men understood. The new
possibility had arrived but the old habit of mind remained. With the
coming of coal and the beginning of the industrial revolution, no one
dreamed that the time for the cessation of human sacrifice had arrived.
When the mines were first opened, the slave trade still flourished with
almost universal sanction.

"It is a slight fact," wrote Lecky, "but full of ghastly significance as
illustrating the state of feeling at the time, that the ship in which
Hawkins sailed on his second expedition to open the English slave trade
was called _The Jesus_."

This voyage was made a hundred years before the harnessing of coal, but
in the middle of the eighteenth century and far into the nineteenth much
the same state of feeling widely prevailed. The first miners in Scotland
were serfs; the first miners in northern England were bondsmen who sold
themselves by the year and were forbidden by law to leave the mine to
which they were bound.

"At that time," write J. L. and Barbara Hammond, basing their account on
the report of the Parliamentary Committee on the Employment of Children
and Young Persons (1842), "boys were employed everywhere, girls in
certain districts, Lancashire, Cheshire, the West Riding, and South
Wales, besides Scotland. Children were employed as trappers, that is to
open and shut the doors that guided the draught of air through the
mine; as fillers, that is to fill the skips and carriages when the men
have hewn the coal; and as pushers, or hurriers, that is, to push the
trucks along from the workers to the foot of the shaft. But in some
mines these trucks were drawn instead of being pushed. 'A girdle is put
round the naked waist, to which a chain from the carriage is hooked and
passed between the legs, and the boys crawl on their hands and knees,
drawing the carriage after them.' In the early days of the century this
arrangement was very common, and women and girls were so employed. By
1842 it was more usual to have small iron railways, and the carriages
were pushed along them. The trapping was done everywhere by children,
generally from five to eight years of age. A girl of eight years old
described her day: 'I'm a trapper in the Gamber Pit. I have to trap
without a light, and I'm scared. I go at four and sometimes half-past
three in the morning and come out at five and half-past. I never go to
sleep. Sometimes I sing when I've light, but not in the dark; I dare not
sing then....' In the West Riding the work of hurrying or pushing the
corves was often done by girls at the time of the report: 'Chained,
belted, harnessed like dogs in a go-cart, black, saturated with wet, and
more than half naked--crawling upon their hands and feet, and dragging
their heavy loads behind them--they present an appearance indescribably
disgusting and unnatural.' ... The children who suffered most were the
apprentices from the workhouse; 'these lads are made to go where other
men will not let their own children go. If they will not do it, they
take them to the magistrates who commit them to prison.' ... In mines
with thick seams it was usual to make good roads, but in less profitable
mines the roads were just large enough to enable small children to get
the corves along them.... It was reported that there was much more
cruelty in the Halifax pits than in those of Leeds and Braseford. A
sub-commissioner met a boy crying and bleeding from a wound in the
cheek, and his master explained 'that the child is one of the slow ones,
who would only move when he saw blood, and that by throwing a piece of
coal at him for that purpose he had accomplished his object, and that he
often adopted the like means.'"

The entire community sanctioned these practices, not the employers only;
for generations even the miners themselves acquiesced in them. Those who
were sacrificed in the mines and factories were victims of the entire
consuming community's war against hunger; the furious drive of the
acquisitive instinct on the one hand, and also of the passionate longing
of all men to escape from economic bondage into security, plenty,
economic and spiritual freedom. It was war of a disastrous sort but the
world of that day saw no alternative,--could see no alternative from the
experience of the race. Until as individuals, and nations and
associations of nations, we have won a stable economic surplus and the
spiritual maturity to use and distribute that surplus for the benefit of
the whole community, we shall not in our hearts condemn war as immoral,
whether it be a military or an industrial war. Always we shall contrive
to believe that what is necessary for us is necessarily good.

People in general deplored the horrors of mining just as before the
coming of coal they had deplored the horrors of the wars they had waged
in order to survive, but the fact remained that if the golden promise of
the industrial revolution was to be realized they must have coal, and
what other way was there to get it? At least part of the world was
living in comfort and security.

As a matter of fact a fair share of the community attained reasonable
comfort after the coming of coal. The acquisitive instinct succeeded in
piling up a vast permanent capital which was enjoyed by a large
proportion of the human race. It had not come through increased
production alone. Raiding and exploitation, both commercial and
military, had helped mightily, for the old method of feeding yourself
from your neighbor's hoard was tremendously accelerated for those
peoples whose manufactures and transportation were driven by the power
of coal. That the exploited peoples suffered in proportion as the
raiding peoples prospered is, of course, true, but among the dominant
peoples themselves the acquisitive instinct had begotten a mutual
consciousness. Throughout those parts of the world where coal had
induced the industrial revolution, a common civilization had sprung up.
Parallel with the triumphant acquisitive instinct had developed the
spirit of brotherhood and mutual aid which limited and controlled it.
The feeling of fellowship which breeds civilization was practically
coextensive with the augmented surplus produced through the coming of
coal. Coal-driven transportation was good enough so that a famine in one
land could be met by the heavy crops from another place: the fighting of
disease, the utilization of patents, the exchange of ideas, of luxuries,
of scientific knowledge, of passports, of fashions, and of food, became
international throughout a large part of the world. Mankind began to
approach a world civilization because since the coming of coal to kill
or starve was no longer the inevitable choice.

That this alternative has even a chance of operating is due to the play
and interplay of the two great fundamental instincts in the soul of
man--the acquisitive instinct through which he learned to use coal to
pile up the material surplus that made civilization possible; and that
other impulse, an offspring of the acquisitive instinct, which has swung
into opposition to its parent but without whose help that parent could
never have achieved a surplus on a large scale, the instinct of
brotherhood, of mutual aid, of cooperation. For without cooperation
among men there would have been lacking the tremendous advantage of
division of labor and mass production, and no surplus, however large and
secure it might have been, could have resulted in civilization except
through mutual aid. Men learned to work together in order to survive;
they learned to enjoy the results of their labor together in order to
become civilized. These two impulses are woven together in man's history
from the start and it is according as one or the other predominates that
we develop a civilization on the basis of our economic surplus, or
merely continue to exist and fight. This instinct of mutual aid is as
truly a cosmic force as the acquisitive instinct.

"The original and elementary subjective fact in society is the
consciousness of kind," writes Professor Giddings, "... It is the basis
of class distinction, of innumerable forms of alliance, of rules of
intercourse, and of peculiarities of policy.... It is about the
consciousness of kind as a determining principle, that all other motives
organize themselves in the evolution of social choice, social volition,
or social policy."

In any attempt to understand the function of coal in the development of
human society, it is necessary to remember the universal democratic
tendency of men similarly circumstanced, to organize into defensive and
offensive groups. They organize into bar associations, medical
societies, religious denominations, manufacturers' associations, and
trade unions in obedience to a principle as pervasive in the animate as
the force of gravitation is in the material world. While the primary
driving force behind each group as it organizes is the acquisitive
instinct, the natural reaching out for the means of subsistence, for
wages, fees, profits; for food, clothing, shelter, then for more food,
more clothing, better shelter, still the actual attainment of the
surplus makes possible the widening operation of the consciousness of
kind, and turns men's minds toward all those attributes that are
characteristic of the good life in which both the individual personality
and also the spiritual being of the group, the nation, and the race find
fruition. For an economic surplus is merely the condition of the good
life, and the end to which the human spirit forever strives to direct
the use of the surplus, is the good life itself--a worthy civilization.

If the consciousness of kind had spread evenly like a rising tide drawn
by the swelling surplus of the age of coal, a world civilization might
have quickly come. But it worked unevenly and erratically. Sometimes it
spread thinly over whole nations in the form of political beliefs and
produced theoretical democracies functioning through the franchise.
Sometimes it left the forms of government severely monarchical and
produced a spotty economic growth in the form of cooperative societies
that functioned in response to the everyday bread and butter needs.
Sometimes it brought those having similar occupations together in guilds
and trade unions, that tended to ignore mere political boundaries and
make men internationally conscious of each other through the way they
got their living. But everywhere the rising consciousness of kind came
upon obstructions and divisions. Waves hurrying up innocent-looking
estuaries would come upon other streams from the same great source, and
meet in spluttering, frothing conflict: a long even swell of brotherly
feeling would break over some rock of ancestral race prejudice in
disaster and bloodshed; mutual aid rose in a murky troubled sea, wave
against wave, one current trying to beat another current back. People
united into a political nation opposed themselves violently to those
united into some economic class within it. Men were driven apart when
the interests of their group conflicted with the interests of other
groups almost as strongly as they were drawn together by common interest
within their own organization.

And always the rise of any new group within a fairly comfortable
community met opposition from some already established group whose
privileges, powers, and possessions the new group tended to infringe.
They inevitably appeared like an invading tribe bent on pillage, and the
community gathered shoulder to shoulder to resist them, every thought
and muscle set to repel what they saw as an attack on the common surplus
and in defence of those whose guardianship of the common hoard had
afforded them a new measure of comfort.

This has been particularly true of all organizations, due to the spread
of consciousness of kind among the workers and their efforts to get for
themselves a larger share of the benefits of the common surplus. Very
rarely has the community been able to see that what was distributed in
the form of advanced wages and better conditions was not necessarily
taken away from the community as a whole.

When the coal miners, actuated by the consciousness of kind, began to
organize for mutual aid and defence, the community at large as well as
the mine owners condemned them as subversive conspirators, not only
against their lawful masters, but also against the general peace and
well-being of the nation, which was quite obviously flourishing,--piling
up a surplus with national security as a by-product,--by reason of the
thousands of tons of coal which the newly organized group might
conceivably curtail. It was the community as a whole, not the employers
only, that sanctioned the use of the courts and the military against the
miners' union, as they would have countenanced their use against
soldiers who mutinied.

Only slowly is our community, to which the coming of coal has given the
chance to develop a world civilization, beginning to see that neither
the acquisitive instinct through which men pile up a surplus, nor the
consciousness of kind through which they organize to build up a
civilization, is the result of individual perversity or caprice. Unions
and employers' associations arise in obedience to a fundamental law of
human conduct, they are the means by which society wins its way out of
chaos and anarchy into peace and orderly government. Through such group
organizations men develop the understanding of one another and of the
community at large, which is the foundation of brotherhood and civilized
life. It is through them that the community develops standards of
living; it is through them that the ideals of cooperation acquire
reality. It is by the acquisitive instinct that men live; it is by the
consciousness of kind, the instinct of mutual aid and cooperation, that
men are transformed into human beings. The interplay of these forces
makes the history of civilization--of nations and the great basic
industries within the nations. They are the flying shuttles with which
man at Time's loom weaves "the living garment of God."

                                CHAPTER IV

                              COAL IN AMERICA

The human significance of coal lies in the effect which the release of
its energy has exercised upon the struggle between the acquisitive
instinct and the consciousness of kind for ascendancy over the soul of
man. Through its creature, the industrial revolution, it has given man
command of an economic surplus and set him free to win the good life for
each individual and to substitute mutual aid for war in international
relations if he will.

But the first effect of coal was not to usher in the good life but to
intensify the ancient struggle, widening its stage from pocketed
civilizations to the world. For more than a hundred and fifty years, the
abundant and readily accessible coal of Great Britain made her the
protagonist in the world drama. Her acquisitive instinct, charged with
cosmic energy, shot lines of imperial expansion out across the seas to
America, India, Australia, China, and Africa. Her coal-created wealth
enabled her to maintain the mastery of the ocean highways which she had
won from Spain and Holland and to hold it against Napoleonic France and
later against imperial Germany. It gave her an economic surplus upon the
basis of which the consciousness of kind welded her people into one
nation and ended the civil wars which from the time of the Danish
invasion and the landing of William the Conqueror had kept each little
group within the island armed against every other little group. And it
transformed her with jarring rapidity into a country that lived by
manufacture and by trade and supported a far larger population than
could have lived upon the island if it had been merely an agricultural
country raising its own food.

In order that this swelling population might go on getting coal out of
the mines and turning out products from the factories it must be
adequately and cheaply fed. The place where its food came from was
chiefly America. During the hundred and fifty years of England's
primacy, America was not only her granary but increasingly the granary
of other nations, and the great reservoir for all their overflowing
populations. For the industrial revolution in England was followed by
the harnessing of coal in France, then in Germany, then later in Japan,
and this set in motion among them the processes of imperial expansion,
whose friction and clash culminated in the World War.

It was as necessary to the success of the industrial revolution,
particularly in specialized little England, that the surplus populations
which were poured by the million into America should send back food to
Europe, as it was that their factory machines should have coal to drive
them. This interdependence was not conscious, not a deliberate effort on
either side, but it was an extremely practical fact nevertheless. In
order that England might live by trade, some other land must live by
agriculture, and during the first hundred and fifty years of the
industrial revolution that land was America.

To live by agriculture was an easy thing in the New World, easier than
it had ever been anywhere before,--to live and to feed a continent
besides. For America is the only great modern nation whose history is
written not against a background of famine but against a background of
economic abundance. After the first thin stream of colonial adventurers
and exiles for conscience' sake had established themselves upon the
Atlantic coast, her seemingly boundless domain opened up before the
hungry millions of Europe like the promised land of milk and honey.
Unlike the peoples of the great Asiatic and European folk-wanderings,
they found no comparably developed peoples to bar their way. As they
spread from the Atlantic to the Blue Ridge and Alleghenies, then along
the Great Lakes and down the Ohio; on across the Mississippi, the Kansas
prairies, the Great Desert, the Sierras and Rockies to California and
the Golden Gate, they found only hunting tribes or the fading remnants
of cliff-dwelling and primitive agricultural clans. These they could
meet not only with effective weapons of defence but also with a highly
developed agricultural technique.

At first America's planless prosperity had little to do with coal and
nothing at all with manufacture. It was a prosperity made up of the sum
of her food products, and men skimmed the soil and the forests with only
one thought, to make that sum immediately great. Exploitation got into
their blood. It was the method by which they grew rich, and when the
wealth of the coal deposits was added to the wealth of the fields and
forests, they carried the same methods of planless exploitation over
into the coal mines. England must still depend on them for food, but
they did not have to depend so abjectly on her for manufactures after
the industrial revolution crossed the Atlantic at the call of the
Pennsylvania coal fields.

After the industrial revolution harnessed their unique reservoirs of
coal, the people of the United States enjoyed a degree of economic
security such as no other people ever enjoyed. Had they been
spiritually prepared, they might have used this economic abundance to
establish brotherhood among men. But after all, they themselves were
Europeans who had fled from the ancient tyranny of hunger. To them
America was naturally more an escape from that haunting menace than a
challenge to the good life. Here and there, as in the Puritan theocracy,
they heard and tried to obey the challenge. But they were not prepared.

The hungry immigrant millions swarmed across the continent, laying waste
the forests, skimming the fresh fertile soil, growing prosperous by
destruction rather than by thrift and planful use. They caroused and
swaggered like prodigals. They glorified mere acquisition, measuring a
man's worth by the money he owned. As they filled the continent, the old
world fever of imperial expansion entered their blood. They seized Cuba
and the Philippines, Haiti and Santo Domingo. They set about building
the greatest navy in the world. After a few faltering efforts to lead
the warring nations to peace through conference and conciliation, they
threw the weight of their wealth and numbers into the balance and with
fire and sword imposed a victorious peace. And they were able to do this
in the last analysis because of the enormous power of their coal supply,
for coal in a modern industrial civilization means guns and munitions of
war, transportation systems to set armies in the field, and the ability
to supply them after they get there. America's coal-wrought wealth made
her decisive in battle. Even so today her unique reserves of coal make
her the arbiter between peace and war. Possessed of the richest coal
fields in the world, she holds the destiny of the nations in her hands.
For coal has grown to mean food and clothing and shelter,
transportation and communication, and the economic surplus and the
leisure without which science, invention, art, representative
government, democratic education, and enlightened organized religion
would atrophy and perish.

Since coal means all these things, and since America owns the world's
greatest available reserves of coal, it is obvious that the manner in
which her people develop and govern their coal fields is of crucial
importance, not only to themselves, but also to the rest of the world.
Before the United States entered the World War, her people were hardly
aware of this fact; even the momentous experience of the war has but
dimly impressed its meaning upon the national mind.

Our coal measures underlie an area of more than four hundred and sixty
thousand square miles. They contain almost four thousand billion tons of
lignite, bituminous, semibituminous, anthracite, and semianthracite
coals. About two-fifths of the world's annual output is mined in the
United States.

The very abundance of the supply has made us enormously wasteful in its
exploitation, as we have been wasteful in the exploitation of our
forests. Unlike the forests, coal once destroyed does not grow again.
The most valuable of our coals are in the Appalachian bituminous fields
that stretch from northern Pennsylvania to Alabama, and in which some of
the best sections have already been gutted and abandoned. In our greedy
grasp for wealth, we have left one ton of coal to waste underground for
every ton we have brought to the surface. More than one hundred and
fifty thousand miners have been drawn into the mines in excess of
efficient requirements. Planless overexpansion of the industry has
resulted in such irregular operation of plant and equipment that for
more than a generation the miners have lost an average of ninety-three
days in the working year of three hundred and eight days, and a needless
overhead charge has been imposed upon the consumer which Mr. F. G. Tryon
of the U. S. Geological Survey calculates at a million dollars for each
working day. Planless exploitation has made the most basic of our basic
industries the prey of technical inefficiency and social unrest, the
extent of which we as a people ignored until they threatened national
and international disaster at the crisis of the war.

This trouble might have gone on some time longer undiagnosed if we had
not met our first modern national emergency in 1917. Of necessity the
weight of the military structure was added to the weight of the
industrial civil structure and the combined load was more than the coal
industry could bear. It bent and broke under it, and in order to
prosecute the war, the government was forced to take hold of the
formless inchoate thing and reshape it into a stable prop for the
national need. As a first step it was necessary to find out what this
great unwieldy coal industry was.

Coal mines are systems of tunnels driven into the veins where they crop
out along the slopes of hills, or from the foot of shafts sunk through
the overlying strata. These tunnels run for miles underground. Secondary
tunnels run from the main tunnel or heading into the rooms where the
miners work. The surveyor's diagram of a mine looks like a crushed
centipede. The getting of coal out of the mines, after it has been
picked or blasted down by the miner, like its distribution after it is
brought to the surface, is almost entirely a problem of transportation.

Even in times of peace our railroad transportation was an intricate and
complicated thing. It had been repeatedly regulated and re-regulated to
bring it more in line with community needs. Among other regulations was
a law, designed to give the public the benefit of as much competition
between operators as possible, which required the railroads to furnish
sidings and cars to all coal mines in proportion to their production,
with a preferential provision for new operations. The double demand for
coal sent up prices and the rise in prices led to the opening of new
coal mines and the re-working of old abandoned ones. All the eleven
thousand mines, scattered more or less at random over thousands of
square miles of territory, clamored for their legal quota of cars and
transportation to market. This competitive din aggravated the confusion
upon our already overtaxed railroads. At the critical moment when the
essential movement of troops and munitions was straining the resources
of the railroads, the sprawling coal industry made their task

In peace times one-third of our ordinary bituminous production is used
to generate steam for transportation, and more than one-third of all the
tonnage carried by the railroads is coal. The weight of the coal which
the railroads normally carry is double the weight of iron ore, steel,
lumber, wheat, corn, oats, and hay combined. The problem of hauling this
huge load is needlessly complicated by competitive cross-shipments of
coal from one mining state into or across another. The producers of
Illinois, Pennsylvania, and Indiana sell their coal in from eighteen to
twenty states, many of them coal-mining states. A part of this
cross-shipment is necessary, because certain mining states like
Illinois, for example, do not produce the grade of coking coal which
their steel plants need and which must, therefore, be brought from West
Virginia or southern Pennsylvania. But most of it is due to blind
competitive planlessness and waste.

Upon this tangled mesh the critical demands of the war placed a crushing
burden. The nation's safety made it imperative not only that coal should
be produced, but that it should be delivered where it was needed. The
miners were digging more coal than had ever been produced before, yet
cries of coal shortage went up from domestic consumers and manufacturers
all over the land. The railroads themselves resorted to the confiscation
of coal in transit to keep their engines running. To avert impending
catastrophe to the nation and the world, the national consciousness of
kind asserted itself over the acquisitive instinct of individuals and
groups, and through the federal government created the Fuel
Administration which brought the mines under unified public control and
converted the coal industry, for the period of the war, into a unified
public service.

From the high central tower of the Fuel Administration, the people of
the United States for the first time caught a fleeting glimpse of the
coal industry as a whole and of the relation it bears to the national
and international industrial life. They discovered that coal bears much
the same relation to our modern industrial structure that the water
supply bears to the life of a great municipality. When America entered
the war, she resembled with respect to her primary source of mechanical
energy a municipality dependent for its water supply upon eleven
thousand separate wells, owned and operated primarily in their
individual interests by thousands of enterprising individuals, with
hundreds of separate delivery systems jostling in the highways that
needed to be kept clear for soldiers and guns, its people bidding
against one another, offering fabulous prices for water, yet parched
with thirst.

"Basic industries and transportation," writes Dr. Garfield, in
describing what he saw as head of the Fuel Administration, "were caught
in a vicious circle. Steel could not be manufactured without coke, coke
could not be made without coal; coal could not be commercially produced
without transportation; transportation was dependent upon coal....
Industrially we were in a wild scramble of manufacture, production, and
shipment.... It was no longer a question of withholding coal from
non-war industries but rather a question whether any coal could much
longer get through to any consumer."

With eleven thousand coal mines in operation, the engines of the nation
were running cold for lack of coal.

Created to avert impending catastrophe, the Fuel Administration went
about the service of the nation much as an engineer would tackle the job
of converting eleven thousand wells into a modern system of water
supply. It dealt with the coal fields as a single great reservoir of
fuel and power. It worked out a budget covering the needs of the
essential industries, the railroads, steel plants, munition factories,
gas and electric utilities, as well as the domestic consumers. It made
maps charting the coal-producing and coal-consuming territories, divided
the nation into regional zones, established these zones as fuel
reservoirs, created a distributing organization by zones and states like
a great system of water mains. It called the experienced operators and
technical managers into public service and entrusted to them the
technical problems of production and distribution. It fixed prices
limiting profits to an estimated fair return. It converted the miners'
union and the operators' organizations into administrative arms of the
government for the industry, with committees for conference and
conciliation at the mines, and in the various producing districts,
heading up in a Bureau of Labor at Washington as a final court of appeal
for the adjustment of disputes over wages and working conditions.

For the period of the war, the coal industry functioned as a cooperative
public service. The coal budget, based upon a detailed analysis of the
country's resources and needs, set a definite standard of performance
both for the industry and the railroads, and made it possible for them
to cooperate intelligently. The zones served as tools for the control
and direction of the flow of coal called for by the budget. Mr. C. E.
Lesher, Director of the Bureau of Statistics of the Distribution
Division, writes: "In the short period of a few months after the work of
the Fuel Administration was begun, it was determined that the
requirements of the United States for bituminous coal in the coal year
ended March, 1919, were 624,000,000 net tons, compared with a production
in 1917 of 552,000,000 tons of bituminous coal, and for anthracite
100,000,000 net tons, but slightly more than in 1917.... To provide coal
was the problem of the Distribution Division of the Fuel Administration;
to provide transportation was the problem of the Railroad
Administration.... The adoption of the zoning system represented the
supreme effort of the Railroad Administration to overcome the
transportation tangle in connection with coal.... So closely did the
officials of the two administrations work, and so effective were the
measures employed, that the results surprised all.... The Director of
Operations of the Railroad Administration in May, when production of
bituminous coal was averaging 11,500,000 tons a week, believed that
11,800,000 was the highest that could be expected in 1918, as the
railroads were believed to have reached their maximum capacity. Within a
month records of 12,500,000 tons a week were reached, and in July, and
again in September, the 13,000,000 ton mark was passed.... When the
armistice was declared, New England, farthest from the mines, with an
average of 20 weeks' supply, was literally gorged with soft coal, and
eastern New York and Pennsylvania, with from 6 to 9 weeks' stock, had
abundant supplies.... From April 1 to July 6, 1918, rail shipments to
New England were 3,058,000 net tons, or 98 per cent of the schedule of
3,150,000 tons; on September 28, shipments were 6,164,000 tons, or 105
per cent of the schedule for that date. The schedule for shipments to
tidewater from April 1 to July 1 called for 11,916,000 net tons. By
December 21 shipments were 9 per cent ahead of the program. The Lake
program called for 28,000,000 tons of cargo coal; a total of 28,153,000
tons was supplied. With similar precision and certainty munition
factories, arsenals, powder works, and by-product plants were kept
running, while stocks were accumulated, insuring uninterrupted
operations throughout the winter. In the same manner retail dealers were
given supplies for their domestic trade. Such results were possible only
because of complete control of shipments and the full information on
which to proceed."

This was an amazing and illuminating demonstration of the fact that our
greatest national resource could be administered for the benefit of the
whole nation. It was no longer a mere possibility, the thing had been

It has been said that this achievement was possible because during the
war the people had a common object which so challenged their higher
ideals that they were able to subordinate their individual and special
group interests to the service of the nation, to make their
consciousness of kind as a people triumphant over the acquisitive
instinct. Again it is said that human nature being what it is, similar
unselfish consecration is not to be expected in the sluggish days of
peace. But if the historical record teaches us anything it is the
essential falseness of this assertion. That record shows us the gradual
irresistible spread of the consciousness of kind from one realm of human
activity to another as the acquisition of a surplus makes this possible.
It shows human understanding reaching out to give all men religious
freedom, to assure them equal political rights; shows it asserting human
brotherhood in the right to education, health, happiness--and these
things not under the stress of war, but in the conditions of peace. The
possibility hangs not on any technical inability, but on the better
preparedness of the minds of men, on their clearer vision, their ability
to see the spiritual implications of their technical triumphs.

                                CHAPTER V

                        THE AWAKENING OF THE MINERS

With the declaration of the armistice and the removal of the incentive
to cooperation in public service which the war gave, the Fuel
Administration and its elaborate system of statistical control of
production and distribution was broken up as rapidly as it had been
organized. During the war, there had been gross examples of profiteering
just as there had been occasional local strikes, but by and large the
operators like the miners had conducted themselves conscientiously as
servants of the republic. To a remarkable degree they subordinated their
acquisitive instinct to their consciousness of kind as citizens of the
nation whose life was threatened from without. But within a year after
the armistice, speculative profiteering was rampant and the coal
industry was paralyzed by a general strike. Mr. Herbert Hoover,
addressing the American Institute of Mining and Metallurgical Engineers,
described the situation as a "national emergency," due to the fact that
"this industry, considered as a whole, is one of the worst functioning
industries in the United States."

How shall we account for this wide, swift swing of the pendulum?
Operators and owners who had offered their skill to the government
during the national crisis, rebelled against all further "interference
with their private business." They rebelled not only against price
fixing and the regulation of distribution, but even against all
attempts on the part of governmental agencies to keep congress and the
public informed of the elementary facts of ownership, costs, wages,
prices, and profits, without which public opinion is helplessly blind.
They sued out an injunction against the Federal Trade Commission to
block its efforts to search out and publish these essential facts. The
unions also chafed under governmental restraint upon their freedom of
action, especially when the government lifted its limitation on prices
and left the consumer at the mercy of an open market. As prices and
profits mounted, they felt entitled to commensurate wage increases. The
war, they said, was over though peace had not been formally declared,
and they demanded release from the restraints of wartime legislation so
that they might freely exercise their economic pressure to secure wage
increases as the operators were taking increased profits. For the first
time in almost a generation they laid down their tools, and finally
submitted to the arbitration of federal commissions only under threat of
an injunction and the imprisonment of their leaders. Economic war and
group rivalry took the place of cooperation in public service.

The main reason for this violent reaction is probably to be found in the
fact that our modern democracies, the United States in particular, were
born in rebellion against the autocratic authority of the feudal state,
the fear and hatred of which still attaches even to our representative
government. The memory of the Stuarts and Bourbons and Hohenzollerns is
still fresh in the modern democratic consciousness, and accounts for the
maxim that the government is best which governs least. Through the
revolutions of the eighteenth century the merchants, manufacturers, and
business men wrested from the monarch his autocratic power, and it is
against this same power as exercised by the owners of property that the
organized labor movement is today in rebellion. But as against the state
when it exercises such autocratic authority as during the war it
exercised through the Fuel Administration, both groups, owners and
workers, unite. They assert the right of self-government within their
industry. Like the economists and business men of the nineteenth
century, they contend that the conflict and balance of their selfish
interests will by some mysterious provision of nature neutralize and
resolve these selfishnesses to the advantage of the community. The
essence of this acquisitive philosophy is expressed in the quaint
nineteenth-century maxim that "greed is held in check by greed, and the
desire for gain sets limits to itself." But this leaves the service of
the community at the mercy of a blind conflict of forces within the
industry, as formerly it was at the mercy of force exercised by the
monarch who was the state, and the public is increasingly dissatisfied
with the result. The public service conception of industry, and
especially of such basic industries as coal, is rapidly taking
possession of the public mind. People are coming to see that the
uncontrolled conflict of forces, like autocratic force itself, is
incompatible with the principle of service. Neither will force exercised
by the state through the courts solve the difficulty. Compulsion is
contrary to the spirit and genius of democracy. The great problem of our
generation is to discover how industrial freedom can be reconciled with
the service of the public. For an answer we shall have to look into the
spirit and structure of such government as our industries have
themselves evolved. For democracy is not, as its earlier critics
declared, synonymous with anarchy. Democracy is a government of laws,
not of men; and laws in a democracy are not emanations of superior
minds, but the codified experience of the people.

As we approach the problem of government in our basic industries as in
the nation, we discover two seemingly conflicting tendencies, two great
elements in our population apparently pulling in opposite directions. In
the question of national security and defence, the one instinctively
follows the ancient tradition of European nations, piling up armies and
navies, and striving to make America the most formidable military power
in the world; the second leans to a policy of reconciliation, striving
by conference and understandings with other nations to prevent
disagreements and to avert wars. The first makes it a matter of national
honor to emphasize individual American rights on land and sea, the
property rights of Americans, our financial and economic interests in
backward countries, and the military force necessary to enforce those
interests; the second aims to establish international relations in which
such rights and interests shall be secure to all nations without the
constant threat of force. To the one, the world is an arena in which to
fight or starve is the eternal choice; to the second, the world is a
communion table at which all men are brothers.

These same tendencies, these same manifestations of the acquisitive
instinct and the consciousness of kind, appear in the record of our
basic coal industry. As the industrial revolution got into full swing in
America, during and immediately following the Civil War, there was a
rush for the possession of the coal mines comparable to the rush for
land. Among the men who won possession, there were some who were keenly
aware of the public obligations of ownership, who in friendly
cooperation with their employes strove to develop their properties in
the interest of the public as well as of their employes and themselves.
But owners and miners alike took their spiritual color from their social
environment and in the soul of the people the acquisitive instinct
remained in the ascendant. Men did not go into business or swing their
tools for their health. Their first duty, as they saw it, was to make
all the money they could as fast as they could, and to put themselves
and those dependent upon them on easy street. "God helps them," they
said, "who help themselves." They gutted the richest veins for quick
profit, as our forests and new lands had been gutted. More mines were
opened than the nation could possibly use. There was a gluttonous
overdevelopment of the industry which swung up and down in high peaks
and low plunges of prosperity and depression, high prices and "no
market," feverish employment and long stretches of intermittent work,
which for hundreds of thousands of miners meant no work at all, and for
many operators meant bankruptcy. The level of government in the industry
was in all essential respects the level of hunting tribes.

During the early days of the industry, the miners, like American manual
workers in general, were under the popular illusion that democracy meant
the passing of a permanent working class. With the Declaration of
Independence the old social stratification of feudal Europe had been
wiped out forever. There was plenty of room at the top. Everybody might
with perseverance and thrift get to the top. This illusion took on
considerable substance from the fact that when the industrial revolution
first invaded the coal fields America still offered great tracts of
unoccupied lands to satisfy the universal land hunger, whereas in
England, for example, the policy of enclosure barred poor men from such
untilled land as there was. This circumstance accounts for the slow and
erratic development of group organization among American miners as
compared with the English. There were many cases like that of the
bituminous miners in Maryland, who went into the mines; took wages and
working conditions as they found them; organized; fought for better
wages and working conditions; accumulated a little money; and then,
instead of using it to build a permanent organization, broke away for
the free lands of the West.

"Their ambition in life," writes Andrew Roy, himself at the time a
miner, "was to save enough money to buy a farm in Iowa or Wisconsin.
They would go back to the mines in the autumn after harvesting, work all
winter, and return with their fresh stake in the spring. None of them
ever returned permanently to the mines."

But as the fertile lands were preempted and America became increasingly
a manufacturing nation, the coal industry acquired a measure of
stability and drew into the mining communities an increasing body of men
for whom mining was to be a life's work. The condition of life for these
permanent miners was largely determined by the camps or villages which
the companies built at the mines. These were generally mean, cheap,
temporary affairs. For the faster the miner works, the faster he skims
the cream, leaving the more inaccessible coal to waste where it lies,
the greater the profit, the better the wages, and the sooner the mine is
worked out and abandoned. This, and the caprice of the market in its
effect upon the overexpanded industry, meant that the miner must live in
his knapsack always prepared to move; and it meant cheap homes and a
mean domestic equipment, houses or shacks that might be abandoned
without serious loss. To this day the great majority of mining villages
have the worst characteristics of city slums intensified by the
isolation and loneliness of the country, once beautiful, but now
stripped of its forests, its streams running black with the sulphurous
waste of the mines. Such moderately attractive cities as Scranton,
Wilkes-Barre, and Hazleton in the anthracite region are exceptional. The
mining towns that sprawl between Scranton and Wilkes-Barre, or that
follow the Panther Creek Valley, are incredibly hideous things. And what
is true of the compact and peculiarly prosperous anthracite region is
even more true of the sprawling bituminous fields.

The isolation and transitory character of the mining towns made the
miners almost completely dependent upon the owners of the mines not only
for homes but also for tools and powder; all their mining, as well as
their household, supplies. To this day in the non-union fields of West
Virginia the operators finance and control, not only the stores, but the
schools, the hospitals, the doctors, the churches, and the police.
Independent merchants were slow to invest their fortunes in such
difficult ground, and since the company store was a convenient means of
supplementing the profit from the mines, independent merchants were not
encouraged to compete. These conditions tended on the one hand to breed
arbitrary management,--autocracy sometimes benevolent, sometimes
tyrannical,--and on the other, restlessness, discontent, and the spirit
of individual and organized revolt. It set the consciousness of kind in
action among the miners especially, and resulted in innumerable local
lockouts and strikes.

A sequence of such local struggles occurred in the Blossburg district of
Pennsylvania in the '60's and '70's. The Civil War created an abnormal
demand for coal, and sent up the price as well as the cost of living
generally. In 1863 the miners of the district organized and succeeded in
raising their wage rate from thirty-five cents to a dollar and ten cents
a ton. At the end of the war, the market broke and the coal fields were
flooded with returning soldiers. To protect the standard of living to
which during the war they had attained, the miners decided upon a
defensive offensive and demanded a further increase of fifteen cents a
ton. The operators insisted upon the liquidation of labor. A strike
followed. The owners ordered the miners to vacate their company houses.
They refused. The local courts issued writs of eviction. To avoid a
clash with the sheriff and his deputies, the miners made a holiday in
the hills, leaving their hearthstones to their wives. By passive
resistance and otherwise, the women held their castles. Then the
operators appealed to the governor who sent in the famous Bucktail
regiment just victoriously back from the war. They put the miners, their
families, and their household goods on the street. The strike was
broken. Such miners as were not deported or blacklisted were compelled
to accept the terms that were offered, including a pledge to abandon and
keep out of their union. So the pendulum swung in 1865.

In 1873 the swing was reversed. Most of the mine owners of Blossburg
were also either bankers or retail merchants through their company
stores. They were hard hit by the panic of 1873. Without consultation or
warning they announced an arbitrary reduction in wages and deferred
payment of wages already due. In November they posted notices that the
miners might get such goods as they absolutely needed at the company
stores, but that no wages would be paid until the following April. Then
the miners again drew together in a union. The operators organized in
opposition. A lockout strike followed. Strike breakers were brought in,
principally a group of recent Swedish immigrants, and marched to a
barracks especially prepared for them.

"The strikers gathered on the public highway in front of the barracks,"
says Andrew Roy, "and insisted on the right to talk with the
strikebreakers through one of their interpreters. The managers declined
to allow this to be done. But finally a Swedish miner got in among them,
and within an hour, the whole of the imported men marched out upon the
highway and joined the strikers. The strangers were formed into line,
with a Scotch piper at their head, who marched them out of town to the
stirring tune of the McGregors' Gathering."

Prevailing public opinion in the '70's, like the prevailing judicial
interpretation of the law, frowned upon concerted action by the workers
as having the nature of a conspiracy much as the concerted action of the
commoners in monarchical days was frowned upon as conspiracy. But
curious sorts of circumstances have occasionally arisen to modify
opinion in one case as in the other. The Boston Tea Party is our
historical example in the political realm. In Blossburg, before this
strike of 1873, the miners had been compelled to take their pay in
company scrip. Except at the company store, this scrip was worth only
from seventy to ninety cents on the dollar.

"When farmers came into mining towns," writes Andrew Roy out of his own
experience, "prospective purchasers of their produce would ask them,
'Will you take scrip?' And if the answer was in the affirmative, a
dicker would immediately be entered into as to the amount of discount to
be allowed."

Independent merchants had gradually ventured into Blossburg. To them
the scrip was a competitive injury. When the operators limited the
miners to credit at the company stores, the independent merchants
protested to the Treasury Department of the United States that the
compulsory circulation of company scrip was an illegal infringement of a
governmental function. The governor of Pennsylvania took alarm at this
appeal over his head and sent the State Secretary of Internal Affairs to
investigate. He made a report condemning the operators' practice. The
attendant publicity scandalized public opinion and turned it to the
miners' side. This time the strike was won.

So by ebb and flow of the consciousness of kind, the elements of a
governing structure, the balance of forces between the operators and the
miners, gradually formed within the industry. But in the main the
balance was determined by public opinion; and public opinion, like the
law, was by inherited tradition upon the side of the owners, the
accepted custodians of property and the national wealth. Episodes like
the use of company scrip tended to even the balance. And more important
still in their effect upon the traditional hostility of public opinion
toward the unions in their infringement upon the vested rights and
privileges of the owners were the great mine disasters.

Some of our coal crops out at the surface in places where through the
ages wind and weather have worn away the overlying clay, stone, and
slate. This can be gathered like wood in the forest without danger. The
amount of such coal is commercially unimportant. Some lies only a few
feet underground so that it is possible to take it by stripping away the
thin overlying material and blast and scoop it out with a steam shovel.
There are some stripping mines in the anthracite field and a
considerable number in the alluvial plains of the West. But the great
bulk of our coal is reached by driving drifts or headings into the veins
through the sides of hills or by sinking shafts scores, or hundreds, or
thousands of feet down through the earth to where the coal lies. From
the mouth of the drift or the foot of the shaft, a tunnel or main
heading or gangway is driven on and on into the coal usually for miles,
with secondary tunnels giving off the main heading into the pitch-black
rooms where the miners work. In the cryptlike terminal rooms, the miner
with his buddy undercuts the "face" of the coal with his pick or with an
undercutting machine, drills shot-holes into the face, sets his charge
of powder and tamps it in, and then shoots the coal down. Sometimes, for
the sake of speed, he shoots it down without undercutting, and in the
anthracite mines where the coal is too hard for undercutting, direct
shooting from the face is the general practice. This blasting of a
friable and inflammable substance fills the cellared air with minute
particles of highly explosive dust. As the mines go deeper and further
away from the opening they accumulate gas and underground water. The
greatest number of injuries and deaths in the mines, and coal mining is
among the most hazardous of all occupations, result from the falling of
overhanging rock and coal; but the catastrophies which have shocked
public opinion into a sympathetic attitude toward the commoners of the
mines do not come from this steady death toll but have resulted from
explosions or fires that have trapped and suffocated or burned their
scores and hundreds.

It seems incredible, in view of the known hazards of underground work,
that there should ever have been opposition to the installation of all
available safeguards. But it must be remembered that we are still very
close to primitive man, that the consciousness of kind and the instinct
of brotherhood are still hard pressed by the primal acquisitive
instinct. In America in spite of potential plenty the community's first
preoccupation was escape from hunger, the winning of individual and
national economic security. The prevailing attitude toward death and
injury in the mines was, and to a great extent still is, much the same
as the prevailing attitude toward death and injury in battle. In
ordinary days of peace we do not glorify the soldier. Similarly, it is
only at time of disaster that our sympathetic understanding goes out to
the shock troops in our war against nature, the men who with pick and
powder win coal underground.

"So numerous and heartrending," says Roy, "had these accidents become
(in the anthracite field) that the miners of Schuylkill county in the
year 1858 appealed to the legislature for the passage of a law to
provide for official supervision of the mines, and a bill for the
purpose was introduced the same year; but it found no countenance, and
never came to a vote. In 1866 it was again introduced, and passed the
lower house, but it was defeated in the Senate. In 1869 it was
reintroduced, passed both houses and received the approval of the
governor of the state. It provided for _one_ mine inspector for
Schuylkill county, _the other counties being left out_. The law had been
in operation only a few months when the Avondale shaft in the adjoining
county of Luzerne took fire and suffocated every soul in the mine
including two daring miners who went down the mine after the fire, in
the hope of rescuing some of the entombed men. The shaft had but one
opening.... The whole underground force of the mine, 109 souls, were
suffocated to death by the gases emanating from the burning woodwork in
the shaft and the breakers on top of it.... No catastrophe ever occurred
in this country which created a greater sensation than this mining
horror. The public press united in demanding the passage of all laws
necessary for the protection of the health and lives of the miners....
When the legislature met in the following January a committee of
representative miners was sent to Harrisburg to have a mining bill
enacted into law for the proper security of the lives, health, and
safety of the anthracite miners of Pennsylvania, which was promptly

Stirred by the Avondale disaster, the miners of the Mahoning Valley in
Ohio had a bill introduced into the Ohio legislature calling for two
separate openings in all mines employing more than ten men underground,
for the forced circulation to the face of the coal of at least one
hundred cubic feet of air per minute for each underground worker, the
daily inspection of all gaseous mines by a fireviewer before the miners
were allowed to enter, the appointment of four state mine inspectors,
and the right of the miners to appoint a check-weighman at their own
expense to see that their coal was fairly weighed at the tipple. As soon
as the bill was printed, a committee of thirteen operators representing
every mining district in the state, supported by legal counsel and the
state geologist, appeared in opposition. Their contention was that the
miners of the state did not want the law, that the bill was the
invention of professional demagogues and labor agitators who sponged a
fat living off the ignorance and cupidity of their misguided followers,
that there was neither gas nor bad air in Ohio mines, that the lives and
fortunes of the miners were safe in the hands of their employers, that
the bill was special legislation and unconstitutional and that if
enacted by the General Assembly of Ohio it would be set aside by the
Supreme Court. The bill was defeated, but a commission of inquiry was
appointed. At the next session of the General Assembly the miners' bill
was reintroduced and passed by a unanimous vote. But before it was sent
to the governor, the operators again sent a committee to defeat it. It
was amended and all provision for state inspection of the mines stricken
out. In the following June a disaster occurred in a mine in Portage
county owned by the member of the legislature who had emasculated the
bill. This mine, too, had but one opening which an accidental fire
converted into a furnace. There were twenty-one men in the mine. Ten
were burned to death and the eleven who managed to escape through the
smoke and flame were terribly injured. The miners' bill was reintroduced
and again opposed. Judge Hoadly, afterwards governor of Ohio, speaking
in opposition very accurately expressed the prevailing state of mind.
"We have tried to make men sober and moral by law," he said, "and now we
are going to try to surround them with protection against carelessness
and danger, and enable them to shut their eyes and walk in darkness,
satisfied with the care and protection of the state. I admit that there
is a line to which the right of the legislature--the duty of the
legislature--may go without infringing on the natural right of the
citizen; but what I want to suggest as the safe side, is to leave the
people free, and to allow mishap and disaster to have its natural effect
as the penalty for and the cure of the evils which result from
negligence which causes mishap and disaster." But in spite of this
persuasive reasoning, the miners' bill, after years of effort, was
finally enacted into law.

Thus slowly the consciousness of kind worked through the public to the
miners, under the influence of such understanding as mining
catastrophies shocked into the public mind. But the main force that made
for the improvement of their conditions of work, for the development of
standards of living among them and of orderly processes of government
within the industry as a whole was the operation of the consciousness of
kind within their own group.

The processes of civilization like all cosmic processes are slow. The
period of recorded history is but a minute in the unnumbered years of
man's life upon earth. It was by slow stages that the blind herd
instinct which sends wolves hunting in packs and leads birds to migrate
in flocks merged into the consciousness of kind and the spirit of
service among men. So in the coal industry, the miners organized slowly,
first in local groups, then by districts, then on a national scale with
the beginnings of international affiliations. They drew together into
unions, broke apart, drew together again. As they acquired strength,
their interests came into conflict with the interests of the coal
owners. There were strikes and lockouts, local joint agreements, then
strikes and lockouts again, then other agreements for arbitration and
conciliation, then more strikes and lockouts. That process still goes on
as in the bitter civil war in West Virginia. But in the main it reached
a culmination so far as the coal industry is concerned when in 1902
President Roosevelt intervened in the interests of the consumers,
asserted a balance of power between and over the two groups, and
established the foundations of orderly government within the industry.
The processes by which representative government has grown up within the
industry run closely parallel with the processes by which the
parliamentary government arose in the European political states, with
property owners performing the very important function of technical
organization and development which in the early stages of national life
the monarch and his executives performed, and the miners playing the
rôle of the commoners. It is upon this historical structure that the
future of the industry as a public service depends.

                                CHAPTER VI


In their volume on The Church and Industrial Reconstruction, the
Committee on the War and the Religious Outlook, an interdenominational
group appointed by the joint action of the Federal Council of Churches
and the General Wartime Commission of the Churches, declare that
"Democracy is the attempt to realize this fundamental right of every
personality to self-expression through cooperation with others in a
common task. In the political sphere it has already found large
recognition.... It applies, or should apply, in the sphere of organized
religion, which is the Church. It applies in the sphere of industry.
Indeed, it may be of relatively small significance for men to have the
right of political self-expression, unless they have similar opportunity
for self-expression in their daily work. For the conditions which affect
them in industry touch them more closely than the concerns of the

It is for this reason that the study of the growth of democratic
organization and government in industry inevitably stresses the growth
of organization and orderly processes among the workers, the commoners
of industry. The political revolution of the eighteenth century
emancipated the owners of property from the autocratic control of the
monarchical state. But, as Sidney and Beatrice Webb have pointed out,
"the framers of the United States Constitution, like the various
parties in the French Revolution of 1789, saw no resemblance or analogy
between the personal power which they drove from the castle, the altar,
and the throne, and that which they left unchecked in the farm, the
factory, and the mine. Even at the present day, after a century of
revolution, the great mass of middle-and upper-class 'Liberals' all over
the world see no more inconsistency between democracy and unrestrained
capitalist enterprise, than Washington and Jefferson did between
democracy and slave-owning. The 'dim, inarticulate' multitude of
manual-working wage-earners have, from the outset, felt their way to a
different view. To them, the uncontrolled power wielded by the owners of
the means of production, able to withhold from the manual worker all
chance of subsistence unless he accepted their terms, meant a far more
genuine loss of liberty, and a far keener sense of personal subjection,
than the official jurisdiction of the magistrate, or the far-off,
impalpable rule of the king. The captains of industry, like the kings of
yore, are honestly unable to understand why their personal power should
be interfered with.... The agitation for freedom of combination and
factory legislation has been, in reality, a demand for a 'constitution'
in the industrial realm."

What the Committee on the War and the Religious Outlook and the Webbs
state in slightly different language explains why the history of
constitutional government in industry is fundamentally the history of
the rise of the workers through their unions and collective bargaining
toward a democratic equality of status with their employers.

As soon as the mining communities became sufficiently stable to allow
the consciousness of kind to operate, the miners began to organize into
small local groups for mutual aid, to care for one another in sickness,
to bury one another at death, and to improve their wages and working
conditions. But it was not until after the industrial revolution got
under full headway during and immediately after the Civil War that they
became actively conscious of a community of interest over wide areas.
For the structure of modern democratic government in industry as in
nations and among nations, depends upon railroads, the postal and
telegraph service, and other means of communication. A strong impetus
and a definite direction was given to the existing tendency toward
organization by the steady infiltration of miners from Great Britain
where constitutional government in the coal industry had already made
considerable progress and where the miners were firmly organized. The
miners held their first national convention in St. Louis, Missouri, in
January, 1861. The call had been issued by Daniel Weaver, an English
trade-unionist, who after the failure of the Chartist movement had
settled in the coal fields of Illinois.

"The necessity of an association of miners and of those branches of
industry immediately connected with mining operations, having for its
object the physical, mental, and social elevation of the miner, has long
been felt by the thinking portion of the miners generally," said Weaver
in his call. "Union is the great fundamental principle by which every
object of importance is to be accomplished. Man is a social being and if
left to himself in an isolated condition is one of the weakest of
creatures, but when associated with his kind he works wonders.... There
is an electric sympathy kindled, the attractive forces inherent in human
nature are called into action and a stream of generous emotion binds
together and animates the whole.... Our unity is essential to the
attainment of our rights and the amelioration of our present
condition.... Our safety, our remedy, our protection, our dearest
interests, and the social well-being of our families, present and
future, depend upon our unity, our duty, and our regard for each other."

The convention formed the American Miners' Association, elected Weaver
secretary and Thomas Lloyd, another English immigrant, president. A
considerable number of miners in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania,
and Maryland joined the union, which exerted a mild influence upon the
legislatures of the several states. But the Association was a national
organization in name only. The miners had not yet learned to work
together under the direction of their own leaders. The organization was
not strong enough to withstand the break in the labor market and the
anti-union drive that attended the flood of returning soldiers at the
end of the Civil War. Moreover, the American public regarded the trade
union as an alien institution, the evil creation of "foreigners" and
alien "agitators." It was held to be contrary to the genius of American
life that workers should combine to interfere with the sanctity of
property and the prerogatives that inhered in that sanctity just as it
had been so held in England a century before. Even by the great majority
of wage workers as by the public at large the accepted theory, carried
over from the feudal tradition of Europe, was that the rights and
interests of both would be best protected and cared for "by the
Christian men to whom God has given control of the property interests of
the country."

Under stress of the panic of 1873, and after a series of unsuccessful
strikes to maintain wages, the American Miners' Association went to
pieces. But local unions, generally known as "Miners' and Laborers'
Benevolent Associations," kept up a struggling existence. The strongest
of these was the Workingmen's Benevolent Association, a consolidation of
all the local unions in the anthracite field. It was largely the
creation of John Siney, an Englishbred Irishman, among the keenest minds
the labor movement has produced. One of the first acts of this
Benevolent Association was to declare a suspension of work in order to
relieve the mines of the glut of coal which had resulted from the slack
industrial period following the Civil War. This maneuver met with
condemnation of the press and from the operators, who did not,
nevertheless, regard it with entire disfavor, since it had a
considerable effect in maintaining prices as well as wages. As soon as
the suspension had accomplished its purpose the miners returned to work,
and immediately thereafter John Siney succeeded in persuading the
anthracite owners to enter a conference with representatives of the
union. The first joint meeting of operators and miners was held in
Scranton in 1869, and as a result of this conference the first joint
agreement ever made between American miners and operators for the
establishment of a wage scale was signed on July 29, 1870, by five
members of the Anthracite Board of Trade and five representatives of the
Workingmen's Benevolent Association.

This unique achievement made Siney a national figure. Local leaders in
all parts of the country appealed to him to call another national
convention. On his initiative, the Miners' National Association was
constituted by the convention held in Youngstown, Ohio, in October,
1873. The convention elected Siney president. National headquarters
were opened in Cleveland.

Wearied with endless strikes the convention had made arbitration,
conciliation, and cooperation the basic principles of their
constitution. Fortified with these principles, Siney and an associate
visited the offices of all the coal companies in Cleveland. All except
one of the operators turned them down. They would have nothing to do
with a union. The exception was Marcus A. Hanna. When Siney assured
Hanna that no strike would be called without previous resort to
arbitration and that the officers of the union would order the men to
keep at work even if an award went against them, Hanna accepted their
proposition and undertook to bring the other operators into line. In
spite of the widespread depression in the coal trade the National
Association grew rapidly. Twenty-one thousand members were represented
at the second convention held in Cleveland in October, 1874. But
notwithstanding Hanna's great influence, many of the operators remained
hostile to the union. Toward the close of 1874, the operators of the
Tuscarawas Valley in Ohio announced a wage cut from ninety to seventy
cents a ton. The miners determined to strike. Siney induced them to
resort to arbitration. The umpire admitted a reduction to seventy-one
cents. The miners were bitter against the decision which had gone almost
completely against them. Only the great influence of Siney restrained
them from striking at once.

Then one of the operators, the Crawford Coal Company, took advantage of
the discontent. This company had refused to join Hanna and his
associates in dealing with the union. During the arbitration
proceedings, the Crawford Company locked out their men for demanding a
check-weighman, and appealed to the operators' association for support.
The associated operators refused. The Crawford Company then offered
their locked-out men an advance of nine cents a ton above the rate fixed
for the union miners by the arbitration award. The acquisitive instinct
was stronger than the consciousness of kind among the non-union miners.
They accepted and went back to work.

This turn of the wheel broke Siney's control over the organization. His
followers threatened to desert unless he repudiated the arbitration
award. He refused. But his executive board, in a desperate effort to
save the union, overruled him and yielded. Strikes and lockouts followed
in quick succession. Hanna was as helpless as Siney. Strike breakers
were imported, under cover men and troops were brought in. Arbitration,
constitutional government, and the union went on the rocks.

Similar misfortune attended Siney's pioneer efforts to establish the
union and constitutional government in his home district at Clearfield,
Pennsylvania. No sooner had the miners joined the National Association
than they expected Siney and his fellow executives to achieve quick
redress of their grievances and to force an advance in wages. They grew
impatient with the slow processes of negotiation. They struck against
the advice of Siney. Immediately the operators in the Clearfield
district followed the precedent of Tuscarawas. They brought in strike
breakers and troops. A brief civil war followed. Some heads were broken.
The strike was lost. In spite of his heroic efforts to keep the peace
and to establish orderly processes of government, Siney was arrested for
conspiracy and thrown into jail. The morale of the Miners' National
Association was broken, and like its predecessors it went by the board.

Like the tides of the sea, the consciousness of kind ebbed and flowed
among the miners. They drew together into local, state, and national
organizations, held for brief periods, and then scattered again under
the impact of the operators supported by prevailing public opinion. They
had not become fully group conscious; neither had the public come to
recognize their unions as essential arms of constitutional government
within the industry.

In the bounteous days of national expansion, in the exuberant '70's and
'80's, a vague belief was abroad that America would never develop a
permanent working class. Every man was "as good as" another, and the
hustling, self-made business man was the American ideal. In accord with
this theory was one of the significant actions of the Miners' National
Association, an attempt to buy coal lands to be operated by the miners,
not as a workers' cooperative association, but as a corporation of
business men. During the '70's and the '80's also the Knights of Labor
built up a great following among the wage-workers, largely on the
philosophy that if they kept free of "class-conscious" trade unions and
went in for a mass movement of all workers, they could by some strange
alchemy of the American spirit rise to the status of independent
business men. The Knights of Labor played much the same rôle among the
wage-workers that the various "populist" movements played among the
farmers before the development of such group-conscious tendencies as
those which in our day have developed the farmers' cooperative societies
and the agricultural bloc.

The labor movement as we know it today in America began when in 1886
Samuel Gompers became first president of the American Federation of
Labor, an office which with the interruption of a single year he has
held ever since. Mr. Gompers led the wage-workers to a frank acceptance
of the prevailing business and acquisitive ideals as the basis, not of
individual escape from the working class, but of their consolidation
into trade unions for the businesslike control and sale of their craft
skill through collective bargaining. It is significant that the
immediate precursor of the American Federation of Labor--the Organized
Trades Unions of the United States of America and Canada, over whose
councils Mr. Gompers exercised great influence--demanded the legal
incorporation of trade unions and a protective tariff for American
labor, as well as the prohibition of child labor under fourteen, the
eight-hour day, the abolition of conspiracy laws, and the other reforms
which constitute the present program of organized labor. By the frank
recognition of the basic force of the acquisitive instinct in human
nature, the realistic leaders of the new labor movement were able to
release and consolidate the consciousness of kind for effective
operation within the wage-working group.

The influence of this new philosophy made itself felt throughout all the
skilled trades and notably among the miners. After the break-up of the
Miners' National Association, the miners maintained state organizations
in Ohio, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and in several other states. They
steadily took the initiative in seeking conferences and negotiations
with the operators of their districts. In spite of the failure of
arbitration under the pioneering leadership of Siney, they supported the
agitation which resulted in the Trade Tribunal Act of Pennsylvania
(1883), and the similar arbitration act of Ohio (1885).

But the process of overdevelopment which has always characterized the
American coal industry created sharp fluctuations of prosperity and
market depression and afforded an unstable basis for the establishment
of the machinery of orderly government. Both miners and operators showed
a tendency to run wild. Conferences were held, arbitration agreements
occasionally entered into, but now one side, now the other, repudiated
the awards as the fluctuating market sent prices erratically up and
down. The needs of the community have always called for the integration
of the industry, but the happy-go-lucky American spirit persistently
shied away from public regulation as long as the acquisitive instinct
could be satisfied at however great a cost in profligate use and waste.
But this very overdevelopment, with its destructive effect upon wages
and regularity of employment, continually brought the miners back to a
consciousness of the need for national organization.

In 1885, John McBride, president of the Ohio Miners' State Union, and
later, for a single term, president of the American Federation of Labor,
issued a call to the miners of the United States to meet in convention
on the ninth of September in Indianapolis. Seven states sent delegates.
The National Federation of Miners and Mine Laborers was formed and its
Executive Board issued a call _to the mine operators of the United
States and territories_ inviting them to a joint meeting for the purpose
of adjusting market and mining prices in such a way as to avoid strikes
and lockouts, and to give to each party an increased profit from the
sale of coal. Only one operator, Mr. W. P. Rend of Chicago, paid any
attention to this call. He inspired the miners to persevere. They sent
out a second invitation. A dozen or so operators met with the executive
board in Chicago and agreed upon a joint call for a national joint
convention to be held in Pittsburgh in December.

"The undersigned committee," the invitation said, "consisting of three
mine owners, and three delegates representing the miners' organization,
were appointed to make a general public presentation of the objects and
purposes of this convention, and to extend an invitation to all those
engaged in coal mining in America, to lend their active cooperation
toward the establishment of harmony and friendship between capital and
labor in this large and important industry.... Apart and in conflict
capital and labor become agents of evil, while united they create
blessings of plenty and prosperity.... Capital represents the
accumulation, or savings, of past labor, while labor is the most sacred
part of capital.... It is evident that the general standard of reward
for labor has sunk too low.... It is equally true that the widespread
depression of business, the overproduction of coal, and the consequent
severe competition have caused the capital invested in mines to yield
little or no profitable returns. The constant reductions of wages that
have lately taken place have afforded no relief to capital, and, indeed,
have tended to increase its embarrassments.... This is the first
movement of a national character in America, taken with the intention of
the establishment of labor conciliation...."

In response to this call a small joint meeting was held in Pittsburgh in
December. It adjourned for a second conference in Columbus, Ohio, in
February, 1886. Here the operators were represented by seventy-seven
delegates, principally from Ohio, but also from Pennsylvania, Indiana,
Illinois, Maryland, and West Virginia. They adopted a national wage
scale, established a national board of arbitration, and provided for the
creation of similar state boards to maintain industrial peace and to
develop the structure and processes of constitutional government.

The agreement held and worked in spite of the opposition of groups of
operators, notably in the West Virginia field and the steel district of
Pittsburgh, and the individualistic lethargy of many of the miners. The
new philosophy of business trade unionism gripped the miners, made the
trade union policy triumphant over the vaguely utopian policy of the
Knights of Labor, and resulted in the consolidation of the miners'
organizations into the United Mine Workers of America in 1890. But the
process of overdevelopment continued in the industry. The workings of
the joint machinery creaked and faltered under the impact of strikes and
lockouts due in the main to market fluctuations, and for a decade the
United Mine Workers, in spite of periods of prosperity and rapid growth,
was perpetually threatened with the fate of its predecessors.

This fate was averted by the economic developments which had converted
the compact anthracite field into a virtual monopoly under the combined
control of the anthracite railroads and the great banking houses of the
East that owned the railroads. While the bituminous industry sprawled
and overdeveloped, the anthracite combination gradually restricted the
production of anthracite to the calculable demand of the market. This
made for stability in the anthracite field, which is reflected in the
fact that while even today the average working year in the bituminous
fields is approximately two hundred and fifteen days,--an average
working day when spread over the year, of less than four hours,--the
working year in the anthracite field gradually rose until today it holds
steady at something more than two hundred and sixty days a year.

This stability enabled the anthracite miners to accumulate an economic
surplus above their immediate needs and set the consciousness of kind in
vigorous operation among them. By 1900 they had developed the nucleus of
a strong organization. Their wages, however, had lagged behind the wages
of the miners in the better-organized bituminous fields. On their
demand, the national officers of the United Mine Workers called a
convention of anthracite representatives in Hazleton, Pennsylvania, "to
devise means by which a joint convention of operators and miners can be
held" to consider the upward readjustment of the anthracite wage scale
and "methods to abolish the pernicious system now in vogue in the
anthracite region by which a part of the earnings of the mine workers is
taken from them by the infamous system of dockage, and by the practice
of compelling mine workers to load more than 2240 pounds for a ton." The
operators disregarded the convention's invitation to a joint conference.
The men struck. The operators made concessions but refused to deal with
the union. The men accepted the concessions and returned to work. During
the next two years they fortified their treasury and prepared to strike
again. John Mitchell had become president of the United Mine Workers. In
February, 1902, he addressed a circular letter to the presidents of the
anthracite railroads inviting them to a joint conference. The railroad
presidents refused to have anything to do with the union. The anthracite
miners then made a public proposal that the issues should be submitted
to the arbitration of the Industrial Branch of the National Civic
Federation, of which Senator Hanna was chairman, or of Archbishop
Ireland, Bishop Potter, and one other person to be selected by these
two. But all such tentatives were also rejected by the operators. It was
about this time that Mr. George F. Baer, president of the Philadelphia
and Reading Coal Company and of the Reading Railway System, made his
interesting declaration that "the rights and interests of the laboring
man will be protected and cared for, not by the labor agitators, but by
the Christian men to whom God has given the control of the property
interests of the country."

Efforts at conference and arbitration having failed, the anthracite
miners called a strike. Only a minority of the men had previously joined
the union, but ninety men in a hundred obeyed the strike call. The
bituminous miners were eager to declare a sympathetic strike, but they
had collective agreements in the more important fields and their
president, John Mitchell, and their secretary, William B. Wilson,
afterwards Secretary of Labor in President Wilson's cabinet, insisted
upon honoring these contracts. Trade union discipline had grown stronger
since the days of Siney and Mitchell's counsel prevailed. The anthracite
strike dragged on throughout the summer. Winter was approaching.
President Roosevelt decided to intervene. There was no precedent for
such intervention in the coal industry, which though basic to the
industrial life of the nation, was held sacred to the traditional rights
of private ownership and business initiative. In his address to the
miners and operators, President Roosevelt expressed his sense of the
unprecedented character of his action.

"As long," he said, "as there seemed to be a reasonable hope that these
matters could be adjusted between the parties it did not seem proper for
me to interfere in any way. I disclaim any right or duty to interfere in
any way, upon legal grounds or upon any official relation that I bear to
the situation. But the urgency and the terrible nature of the
catastrophe impending, where a large portion of our people, in the shape
of a winter fuel famine, are concerned, impel me after anxious thought
to believe that my duty requires me to use whatever influence I
personally can bring to bear to end a situation which has become
literally impossible."

In spite of his disavowal of legal authority or official responsibility,
President Roosevelt's action was publicly regarded as the official
action of the nation's chief executive. It gave the public its first
intimation of the status of coal as that of a public utility. It stamped
upon the coal industry the character of an essential public service
which has attached to it ever since. Backed by public opinion, which
would have sustained him if he had declared the existence of a public
emergency and had taken over the anthracite industry as the government
did the entire coal industry during the war, he was able to force the
submission of the dispute to a commission of arbitration by whose
decision both sides pledged themselves to abide. The strike was settled.
A machinery of government was established and put into operation. As the
result of President Roosevelt's action, collective bargaining was for
the first time given public sanction not only in the anthracite field
but throughout the coal industry. For seventeen years, and indeed, with
the exception of a brief interval in 1919, for twenty years, peace and
constitutional government prevailed not only in the anthracite field,
but, with the exception of a few districts, notably certain counties in
West Virginia and the coking fields subsidiary to the steel industry in
Pennsylvania, Colorado, and Alabama, throughout the bituminous fields

The structure of this government and its basic laws are written into
collective contracts, which, together with the policies formulated by
the two parties through their national organizations, must be our guides
in the quest for an answer to the question as to how, short of the
autocratic control of the Fuel Administration, the coal industry is to
be developed into an integrated, dependably governed, public service.

                                CHAPTER VII

                           THE RISE OF DEMOCRACY

The historians of the growth of democratic government in the coal
industry generally date the establishment of collective bargaining as a
permanent institution from 1898, when the operators of the Central
Competitive Field--Western Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois--in
a joint conference with the representatives of the United Mine Workers
of America entered into an agreement which with minor modifications was
periodically renewed from that time onward. From that year to 1922
operators and miners alike recognized the agreement in the Central
Competitive Field as basic to the agreements in all other fields and the
central competitive conference as the necessary prelude to all other
conferences. But it was President Roosevelt and the Anthracite Strike
Commission which he appointed that lifted human relationships within the
industry out of the limbo of frontier strife and periodic guerrilla
warfare and stamped them with the quasi-public character of a
self-governing constitutional democracy.

From the beginning, certain of the coal owners, notably those in
sections of West Virginia and Alabama, whose coking coals make them
economically subsidiary to the steel industry, have held strongly to the
autocratic powers and privileges which the conception of property
carried over from the pre-revolutionary monarchical days when the king
was generally recognized, _Dei gratia_, as the custodian of the national
hoard. But the Roosevelt Commission took the stand which has
increasingly won public acceptance, that autocracy in industry is
incompatible with democracy in the political state, and that they must
both rise or fall together. Forms may change, but it may be taken as
axiomatic that if democracy is the law determining the evolution of
political civilization,--if it is the condition of the full development
of the individual personality and the attainment of the good life and
human brotherhood,--it will survive and grow in industry as well as in
the political realm. It is from this principle of democratic evolution,
and not from the strikes and lock-outs and barterings over wages, hours,
and profits incidental to its development, that collective bargaining
and industrial democracy derive their fundamental significance.

In appointing the Commission "at the request both of the operators and
of the miners," President Roosevelt asked them not only to pass upon the
questions in controversy, but also "to establish the relations between
the employers and the wage workers in the anthracite fields on a just
and permanent basis."

In arbitrating the immediate questions in dispute,--questions of wages,
hours, and working conditions,--the Commission, even after months of
hearings at which hundreds of witnesses appeared, found themselves in
the usual predicament of arbitrators and the lay public in such
circumstances. The facts about the industry,--its capital investment,
its financial organization, its earnings and profits, the cost of living
in the district, the organization of work in the mines, the character of
the work, the skill which it required, and its attendant hazards,--had
never been scientifically determined. Then as now these essential facts
were held to lie within the sacred province of private business
enterprise and not within the legitimate scope of public inquiry and
revelation. In instance after instance, they found that statistics of
the kind presented were "rather too inexact for a satisfactory basis on
which to make precise calculations." On the demands of the miners and
the counter-demands of the operators, they were reluctantly constrained
to adopt the usual refuge of arbitration tribunals set up in an
emergency; they "split the difference." The miners, for example, asked
for a twenty per cent increase in their rate of wages; the Commission
granted them ten per cent. Other issues were not susceptible of such
definite arbitrament, but in general the Commission, striving to hold
the scales of justice even, followed the rule of fifty-fifty.

In presenting their award, the Commission, keenly aware of the almost
impossible burden which the absence of scientific knowledge with respect
to this basic industry placed upon them, declared that "all through
their investigations and deliberations the conviction had grown upon
them that if they could evoke and confirm a more genuine spirit of good
will, a more conciliatory disposition in the operators and their
employes in their relations toward one another, they would do a better
and more lasting work than any which mere rulings, however wise and
just, may accomplish." It was with this end in view that they set up a
scheme of constitutional democratic government within the industry.

Quotation is often dull, but nothing can take the place of direct
quotation in the case of a document of epoch-making importance. By way
of justifying their action the Commission declared that "in the days
when the employer had but a few employes, personal acquaintance and
direct contact of the employer and employe resulted in mutual knowledge
of the surrounding conditions and the desires of each. The development
of the employers into large corporations has rendered such personal
contact and acquaintance between the responsible employer and the
individual employe no longer possible in the old sense. The tendency
toward peace and good-fellowship which flows out of personal
acquaintance or direct contact should not, however, be lost through this
evolution of great combinations. There seems to be no medium through
which to preserve it, so natural and efficient as that of an
organization of employes governed by rules which represent the will of a
properly constituted majority of its members, and officered by members
selected for that purpose, and in whom authority to administer the rules
and affairs of the union and its members is vested."

The anthracite operators had conditioned their submission to the award
of the Commission by refusing to be drawn into a collective agreement
with the miners' national organization, the United Mine Workers of
America. The Commission got around this technicality by constituting the
anthracite district divisions of the union and the organized anthracite
operators the two houses of the anthracite parliament. The democratic
government which they set up is typical of the scheme of government
which now prevails through eighty per cent of the coal industry, and
which, while it is subject to the fluctuations characteristic of all
democratic institutions, may be taken as permanent in principle.

Again, because of its historical importance, the language of the
Commission calls for direct quotation. The Commission decreed: "That any
difficulty or disagreement arising under this award, either as to
interpretation or application, or in any way growing out of the
relations of the employers and employed, which can not be settled or
adjusted by consultation between the superintendent or manager of the
mine or mines and the miner or miners directly interested, or is of a
scope too large to be so settled or adjusted, shall be referred to a
permanent joint committee, to be called a board of conciliation, to
consist of six persons, appointed as hereinafter provided. That is to
say, if there shall be a division of the whole region into three
districts, in each of which there shall exist an organization
representing a majority of the mine workers of such district, one of
said board of conciliation shall be appointed by each of said
organizations, and three persons shall be appointed by the operators,
the operators in each of said districts appointing one person.

"The board of conciliation thus constituted shall take up and consider
any question referred to it as aforesaid, hearing both parties to the
controversy, and such evidence as may be laid before it by either party;
and any award made by a majority of such board of conciliation shall be
final and binding on all parties. If, however, the said board is unable
to decide any question submitted, or point related thereto, that
question or point shall be referred to an umpire, to be appointed, at
the request of said board, by one of the circuit judges of the third
judicial circuit of the United States, whose decision shall be final and
binding in the premises.

"The membership of said board shall at all times be kept complete,
either the operators or the miners' organizations having the right, at
any time when a controversy is not pending, to change their
representation thereon.

"At all hearings before said board the parties may be represented by
such person or persons as they may respectively select.

"No suspension of work shall take place, by lock-out or strike, pending
the adjudication of any matter so taken up for adjustment."

From the date of the Commission's award to 1919, when President Wilson
created a similar commission to avert a threatened break, the anthracite
operators and miners, who were invariably represented by the presidents
of the three district organizations of the United Mine Workers of
America, lived at peace under this constitution.

The machinery of constitutional government thus given public sanction in
the anthracite field is in its general outline and provisions typical of
the machinery which through joint conference and negotiation the
organized miners and operators have worked out throughout the greater
part of the bituminous fields. The miners act under the authority of
their national convention when it is in session and under the general
direction of their national president and executive board, acting under
laws devised by the national convention in the interval between the
national convention's biennial sessions. Within the limitations set by
the national laws of the organization, the four thousand local unions
and the twenty-seven district unions exercise a degree of local autonomy
analogous to the local autonomy of our cities, towns, counties, and
states. In fact the entire national organization is built up from the
mine committees at the individual mines, which, conjointly with the
representative of the management at the mine, are the courts of original
jurisdiction. As in the case of our states in relation to the federal
government, these local bodies reserve all authority that is not
specifically delegated to the national organization through its
constitution and the action of the national convention, the
representative national congress of the union. Unlike the President of
the United States, the president of the United Mine Workers has no power
to appoint and remove his cabinet--the National Executive Board--but
through his power over the national organizers and the other agents of
the national office, he is in a position to control the political
machinery of the organization. By virtue of its form of organization,
the miners' union has the virtues as well as the defects of our American
political organization, defects which are the price of self-government
and the educative processes of self-government.

Because of the compact nature of the anthracite field and its domination
by a small group of railroads, the operators of this field have acted in
concert for many decades. But until 1917, the coal owners of the country
had no national organization. In that year, for the purposes of
negotiation with the federal government relative to the controlled
production and price of bituminous coal, they organized the National
Coal Association. Unlike the miners' national organization, this
Association is not by its certificate of incorporation explicitly
concerned with the wage contract or industrial relations as such. Its
primary object is the "encouragement and fostering of the general
welfare of the coal-mining industry" as a business enterprise. It is,
however, acquiring many of the functions of the miners' union. In recent
controversies it has actively assisted the local operators' associations
in their dealings with their organized employes. And like the miners'
national organization it actively concerns itself with the protection
and advancement of the interests of its members in Congress and the
state legislatures. But the immense extent of the bituminous coal fields
and the highly competitive character of the industry, which has been
artificially maintained by the Sherman law, has prevented the compact
organization of the bituminous operators and has limited concerted
action, especially in matters affecting the labor contract, almost
entirely to local, state, and district associations. It is upon the
miners' organization that the operators largely rely to equalize
competitive conditions. For wages constitute the largest single item of
cost in coal production and it is only through the ability of the
miners' union to negotiate on a nation-wide basis that this burden can
be equalized for the thousands of competing operators.

The inability of the operators to achieve a national organization has
not only contributed to the overdevelopment of the industry with
consequences that became critically manifest during the war, but has
also greatly complicated the struggle of the miners to establish
collective negotiation and agreement on a national scale. In Illinois,
for example, there are three operators' associations which have been
organized to deal with labor. The oldest of these is the Illinois Coal
Operators' Association formed in 1897. During a wage controversy in 1910
the operators of the fifth and ninth Illinois districts broke away from
the parent body and formed an association of their own. In 1914, the
operators of the Springfield district organized the independent Central
Illinois Coal Operators' Association. Diversity of mining conditions in
the various sections of the Illinois coal field and the inability of the
operators to equalize competitive costs without the help of the miners
were responsible for these secessions. One of the objects enumerated in
the constitution of the Central Illinois Coal Operators' Association is
"to protect the interest of the members of this association in the
making of district, state, and interstate contracts with the United Mine
Workers, to the end that such members shall obtain scales, rates,
prices, conditions, and _such differentials_ from the basic rates as the
relative physical and other working conditions of the mines owned by
them entitle them to." An identical clause appears in the constitution
of the Coal Operators' Association of the fifth and ninth districts of
Illinois. In 1910 the operators in these two districts were paying seven
cents a ton more than other members of the parent association. They
seceded and entered into a separate agreement with the union in the hope
that the union would be able to abolish this unfavorable differential.
The union succeeded only in reducing the differential to four cents.
While these three associations compete with one another for terms with
the miners' union within their own state, they cooperate in their common
effort to secure from the miners terms that will place them at a
competitive advantage as against operators in other states. This rivalry
among the operators makes the diplomatic problem of the union's national
officers a very difficult one and when groups of operators, like those
in certain counties of West Virginia and Alabama, refuse to deal with
the union at all and impose cut-rate wage scales upon their unorganized
employes as a basis for cutting the price of coal in the limited market,
the industry is thrown into confusion bordering upon anarchy. The
operators in the organized fields hold the union responsible for its
failure to organize the anti-union fields and so to equalize competitive
conditions. Many of them decide that their only remedy is to break with
the union and through individual bargaining with their employes when
the labor market is overstocked force down wages and working conditions
to the level of the anti-union fields. The organized miners are thus
compelled to fight for their organization and the maintenance of their
dearly won standard of living. Strikes and lockouts temporarily take the
place of the orderly processes of joint negotiation, conciliation, and
collective agreement as in the spring of 1922.

The processes of conflict and cooperation through which government in
industry, as in the state, evolves, are as truly cosmic processes as
those through which the coal measures themselves were created, with the
humanly significant difference that the processes of social evolution
are, within certain limits, controllable by the will of man. The policy
of democratic peoples and therefore of their governments is to allow the
maximum freedom of development to government within industry compatible
with the comfort and economic security of the community as a whole.
Where the security of the community is threatened, the government tends
to intervene as President Roosevelt did in the case of the anthracite
controversy. And while the traditional bias of government and the
law,--the bias which they inherited from the feudal society which
existed when the industrial revolution began,--favors the owners of
property to which a special sanctity still adheres, public opinion among
peoples devoted to democracy in the political state increasingly tends
to assert itself in favor of democracy in industry, and more especially
such basic industries as the railroads and coal. It is for this reason
that it is logical to assume that the point of view toward collective
bargaining, expressed by President Roosevelt's Commission and
incorporated into the social creeds of most of the Christian
denominations, will ultimately prevail. And since collective bargaining
and the orderly processes of government initiated by the joint labor
contracts are the historical foundations of democracy in industry, it is
also reasonable to infer that collective bargaining will increasingly
become the rule in industrial relations.

But there are large issues of momentous public concern which do not come
within the scope of collective bargaining. Rule 15 in the standard
agreement between the operators and the miners in the bituminous fields
of central Pennsylvania specifically forbids the miners to concern
themselves in any way with the problems of management and the technical
equipment and organization of the mines. Because of the great abundance
of coal, the industry had been developed by overexpansion and wasteful
skimming rather than by the application of scientific methods to the
mining of the best coal and its efficient utilization. Not only is one
ton of coal left irrecoverably underground for every ton brought to the
surface, but less than one-half of the economic value of coal is
utilized by our primitive methods of consumption. In a time when it is
possible to transform coal into gas and electricity at the mine and
transport its fuel and power cheaply by pipe and wire, thirty per cent
of our entire coal production is used for transportation by steam
engines that harness up only from nine to twelve per cent of the energy
in a ton of coal in a way that will actually pull a train--and a third
of all the freight tonnage carried by the railroads is coal. Moreover
our modern chemical industries, such as the dye industry, are based upon
the substances contained in bituminous coal, most of which are wasted in
our customary methods of consumption. These facts impose an immense
burden of needless cost upon the consumer, and draw into the
overexpanded coal industry tens of thousands of miners in excess of
efficient requirements. The owners are therefore subject to wide
fluctuations in the price of their product, the miners are the victims
of intermittent and irregular employment with consequent uncertainty of
earnings, and the public ultimately foots the bill, which, as has
already been pointed out, Mr. F. G. Tryon of the U. S. Geological Survey
calculates at one million dollars for each working day paid in
unofficial and needless taxation, and the miners, by the terms of the
collective agreement are explicitly debarred from all participation in
the solution of these problems of management.

As a remedy, bituminous operators have proposed that they shall be
relieved of the restrictions of the Sherman law, so that they may
combine to limit production and regulate distribution and prices as the
anthracite owners have succeeded in doing. The miners, by resolution of
their national convention, have proposed a policy of public ownership
and democratic administration, the entrusting of the technical
regulation and development of the mines to engineers appointed by the
government and the administration of labor relations by a democratic
tribunal composed of representatives of the technical management, the
public, and the miners. The effectiveness of either policy would be
contingent upon the application to the mines and their product of the
scientific knowledge which has been rapidly accumulating during the last
decade and very little of which is now applied to the industry. The
character of the political reconstruction of the industry, which public
necessity must sooner or later compel, will be largely determined by the
outcome of the impending technical revolution in the production and
utilization of coal.

                               CHAPTER VIII

                              RIVALS OF COAL

Until recently it has been taken for granted that there was plenty of
coal. The industrial revolution rose and triumphed on the theory of an
inexhaustible supply. Mines were opened casually here and there and such
coal as was easy to get was taken from the reserves which were supposed
to be bottomless. And men were poured into the mines, thousands in
excess of the need. They were as plentiful as the coal. Because of these
two things--the vast amount of coal and the cheap and abundant man
power--the coal industry came through the industrial revolution which it
created, without being itself revolutionized.

Now the coal supply is large, but it is not by any means unlimited. No
one can increase it. There is no way of manufacturing coal. The
limitations of the supply were fixed by the geographical revolution.
Twenty million years ago all the coal we have or shall have was packed
away in the ribs of the earth in seams varying from sixty feet to the
thickness of a blade of grass. It is estimated that we still have in the
world more than seven thousand billion tons distributed as follows:

               North America               5,073,431,000,000
               Asia                        1,279,586,000,000
               Europe                        784,190,000,000
               Australasia                   170,410,000,000
               Africa                         57,839,000,000
               South America                  32,097,000,000
                             Total         7,397,553,000,000

This seems like a vast amount which even wasteful production could
hardly exhaust in thousands of years. But much of the supply is of such
low grade as to be inefficient as a steam producer, much of it occurs at
such deep levels or so remote from the centers of population as to be
commercially unprofitable to mine. Mr. Floyd W. Parsons, formerly editor
of the _Coal Age_, has warned us that "each year now witnesses the
exhaustion of a number of high-grade coal areas. Far more mines
producing better grades of coal are being worked out than there are new
mines commencing to produce.... Operating companies are now going over
their acreage, taking out pillars and working low-grade thin seams." And
Mr. D. B. Rushmore, chief engineer in the power and mining department of
the General Electric Company, calculates that if our coal consumption
were to continue to increase at the apparently normal rate of seven per
cent each year, the life of our known reserves would be as follows:

  Eastern District, which includes the most accessible and
  best quality of our fuel                                     59 years
  Eastern, Central, and Southern Districts                     65 years
  Entire U. S. and Alaska, two-thirds of this being low-grade
  coals and lignites                                           84 years

These figures are based upon the appraisals of the U. S. Geological
Survey. They include coal in veins as shallow as fourteen inches, all
coal whose ash content does not exceed thirty per cent, and all known
deposits within six thousand feet of the surface. They are based on the
optimistic assumption that two-thirds of the coal in the mines will be
brought to the surface, a considerably higher recovery than has hitherto
been achieved. Mr. Rushmore concludes that the evidence points
unmistakably to an approaching scarcity of high-grade coal and
increasingly higher prices.

One of the greatest single causes of waste and increased prices is our
antiquated system of distributing the energy contained in coal. It is
estimated that every hundred tons of coal shipped involves the burning
of ten tons in railroad locomotives. There is no longer any technical
justification for transporting power in the enormously bulky form of
coal when it could be much more efficiently distributed by pipe and wire
in the form of gas and electricity. Even were it not enormously
inefficient, there are definite physical limits beyond which the steam
haulage of coal in bulk cannot be increased--certain bottle necks like
that through which the Lehigh River flows, narrow edges like that along
the Susquehanna, where no more slow puffing trains can go toiling up and
down the slippery grades, because there is no more room for them on the
tracks. Already the load upon the antiquated steam railroads is too
heavy for them to bear, so that the system of transportation breaks down
under every peak load and in every crisis such as that induced by the

Moreover our methods of consumption are incredibly wasteful. Mr. George
Otis Smith, Director of the U. S. Geological Survey, has prepared a
chart showing that of every two thousand pounds of coal, six hundred
pounds are lost in mining, one hundred and twenty-six pounds are
consumed at the mine and en route to the boiler room, four hundred and
forty-six pounds are lost in gases going up the stack, fifty-one pounds
are lost by radiation and fifty-one in the ash pit, six hundred and
fifty pounds are lost in converting heat energy into mechanical energy,
and only seventy-six pounds out of the two thousand are actually
converted into productive mechanical energy. After two hundred years of
mechanical invention, we are still stupidly content to dissipate
ninety-six per cent of the labor-saving value of coal.

But even if the coal supply were unlimited, if every year a new crop
grew to take the place of the one consumed, even if it were physically
possible for the railroads to carry an ever-increasing load, the miners
are not willing to get it out on the same old basis of low wages, high
hazards, and demoralizing irregularity of employment. Man power has
changed its own status. In 1919 the wages of common labor at the mines
were fixed at seven and a half dollars a day. As wages go, this would
have meant a reasonably fair standard of living if work in the mines had
been steady. But during the last thirty years the mines have been idle
an average of ninety-three days in every three hundred and eight working
days in the year, and during 1921 the miner was fortunate who got as
much as two days of work in the week, that is, fifteen dollars a week
and seven hundred and eighty dollars a year. The hazards of mining have
increased. The U. S. Bureau of Mines tells us that while in 1890 the
death rate of coal miners was 2.15 for every thousand men employed, in
1914 the rate had increased to 3.19. In 1890 between three and four
miners were killed for every million tons mined; in 1914 between four
and five miners were killed for every million tons. Labor is no longer
content to be sacrificed in order to put an increasing stream of cheap
coal into the fire boxes of engines that waste nine-tenths and more of
their labor and so deprive them of the possibility of the good life
according to American standards. They are taking stock and evaluating
themselves. Some of their demands, like the six-hour day, five days a
week, are socially unwise, but they represent a just protest against
the demoralizing intermittency of employment. The demand is simply an
effort to spread the actual hours of work evenly throughout the year.
Already the conditions imposed by the unions in the interest of a
reasonable standard of living act as a strong differential against the
mining of difficult seams and poor grades of coal. They are rapidly
getting into a position where they can dictate the conditions under
which they will hazard their lives underground. And these are not
conditions which the coal industry with its competitive overdevelopment,
its load of parasite railroads, sales companies, company-owned houses
and stores, its inefficient operating methods, and particularly its
antiquated energy-producing equipment on which it must pay heavy
interest, is prepared to meet.

Because the supply of coal cannot much longer meet the cumulatively
wasteful demands upon it; because the railroad system is breaking down
under the increased bulk of coal to be transported; because the miners
are increasingly insisting that the reward of their hazardous labor must
give them a fair chance of the good life according to American standards
of living; and because the community which must be served cannot
indefinitely pay the price of inefficiency and waste, the present order
in the coal industry is drawing to a close.

The technicians have seen this impending change for a long time. Through
their help the industrial revolution might have reorganized the coal
industry decades ago under the pressure of an increasing demand for
power, if it had not been held off by new discoveries of petroleum and
natural gas. Petroleum, which had been used in a small way in many
countries for centuries, first became an international commodity when
Roumania began to ship it in 1857. It took on great industrial
importance when the first American well, the famous Drake well in Oil
Creek, Pennsylvania, was sunk in 1859. But in 1860 the world's total
recorded production was less than five hundred and ten thousand barrels,
of which five hundred thousand barrels are credited to the United
States. By 1917 the world output had risen to nearly four hundred and
fifty million barrels, of which the United States furnished nearly four
hundred million.

The coal and petroleum industries are closely interrelated. Coal and
petroleum are largely interchangeable as sources of energy. Both can be
used for fuel under boilers in their crude state, although crude oil is
the more efficient; both provide an illuminating oil for use in lamps,
although kerosene is so much better than coal oil as to have driven it
out of the market; both furnish a satisfactory fuel for the
internal-combustion engine, although benzol, a coal derivative, has not
yet been recovered in sufficient quantities to make it a competitor of
gasoline; both provide a fuel gas, although that derived from petroleum
has the greater heat value. Ton for ton, petroleum has every advantage
over coal, and there is every reason why it should drive coal out of its
preeminent position in industry, except one--the limitations of the

For petroleum is far cheaper to produce, not only in terms of money, but
in terms of human effort and life. Compare with the labor and hazard of
opening and working a coal mine Pogue and Gilbert's description of the
opening of an oil well.

"Drilling an oil well is commonly done by means of a heavy string of
tools, suspended at the end of a cable and given a churning motion by a
walking beam rocked by a steam engine.... The steel tools, falling
under their own weight, literally punch their way to the depth desired."

The usual custom is for four men working two twelve-hour shifts to sink
a well. Their work is to keep the engine that operates the drill
running, to watch the operation, and to stoke the engine. The only
danger is when the time has come to "shoot" the well. This is done only
if the oil does not flow naturally when the oil-bearing strata are
reached. The "shooting" consists in dropping a "go devil" upon canisters
of nitroglycerine to blow out a cavity at the bottom in which oil may
collect. If the charge explodes before it reaches the bottom of the
well, it may blow back and wreck the derrick, and the timbers and
"bull-wheel" may fall upon the men. This danger, which can be obviated
by the simple process of the men going away until after the charge has
exploded, is practically the only one connected with drilling for
petroleum, except for the incidental danger which all handling of high
explosives necessarily involves.

A well costs only about one-tenth as much per foot of descent as a mine
shaft; and it can be put down in much quicker time. When it is once in
contact with the oil, operating expenses are trifling, for in many cases
the oil reaches the surface under natural gas pressure, and in others it
has merely to be pumped. There are not the expenses for breaking rock,
timbering, or haulage, which are common in coal mining.

So that in addition to being a better fuel than coal to burn under a
steam boiler, petroleum mining is as healthful and safe an occupation as
can be well found in contrast with the extremely dangerous work of the
coal miner, and it can be far more quickly and more cheaply got out of
the ground.

It has other advantages.

Coal, bituminous coal especially, is so bulky and so liable to
spontaneous combustion that it is difficult to store. Petroleum, on the
contrary, can be easily and satisfactorily stored in iron tanks which,
standing about like great cheese boxes, are characteristic of the
oil-producing country. Added to the advantage of easy storage is the
much greater one of easy transportation. Unlike coal, the crude
petroleum supply of the country makes no demand upon the railroads. Only
under exceptional circumstances and for short distances is it hauled
about in tank cars. It has its own independent system of pipe lines,
after the manner of a great water supply. These systems connect the oil
wells with the refineries, the markets, and the seaports.

The pipe lines are ample to distribute the current production of oil. It
is these pipe lines that have not only made the petroleum industry
absolutely independent of the railroads, but through the low cost of
their operation have lowered the cost of petroleum products. They have
also made it possible to establish oil refineries near the points of
consumption and have united widely separated fields.

For all these reasons--because it is a more efficient fuel under steam
boilers; because it can be produced more cheaply; because the work of
mining it is easy and the danger is slight; and because having an
independent transportation system of its own it makes no demand on the
already overburdened railroads--petroleum might have superseded coal as
the power that rules industry if there had been enough of it. Even as it
is, petroleum has been able to meet a large part of the demand for fuel
and so stand between the coal industry and the reorganization hanging
over it.

But we have been, if possible, more prodigal in our exploitation of our
petroleum resources than of coal. There was an immediate market for all
the petroleum that could be produced. The well-owner's chief anxiety was
lest his neighbor, whose well tapped the same underground reservoir,
should get the oil out before he did. So the exploiters of petroleum
rushed on their quarry with an avidity never equalled by the exploiters
of coal. While approximately one-half of the coal has been left in the
ground through the eagerness of the owners to beat each other to market,
from seventy to ninety per cent of the petroleum in the various fields
has been lost from the same cause. And industry has seemed to take it
for granted that because petroleum was being produced so rapidly, there
was an unlimited supply. In 1916, many plants shifted from coal to fuel
oil, because of the inability of the railroads to deliver coal. We have
developed an oil-burning navy and are rapidly developing an oil-burning
merchant marine. Ships and factory furnaces are competing with the
internal-combustion engines of millions of automobiles and the hungry
lamps of the countryside for the diminishing reserves of petroleum.
Already the supply of crude petroleum is hard pressed by the demand for
fuel oil. Already approximately one-half of the original petroleum
supply of the United States is gone. In 1918, 460,721,000 barrels were
taken, while it was estimated that 6,730,000,000 barrels remained in the
ground, and the production during the two subsequent years was
approximately 400,000,000 barrels annually. The petroleum reserve,
converting barrels into tons, amounts to only 2/1000 of our reserves of
coal. If we stopped mining coal tomorrow and let American petroleum take
its place, all our petroleum resources would be exhausted in about
fifteen months.

And even if the supply of petroleum were far less limited than the
experts estimate it to be, even if there were enough of it to last for
many decades to come, the fact that it is practically the one lubricant
of the industrial world makes it a social crime to burn it as a
substitute for coal. Without it, every railroad wheel would run hot and
stop; the great turbines in our ships and modern power plants move on
bearings that are smothered in petroleum oil. And for petroleum as a
lubricant there is no commercially available substitute.

Closely associated with petroleum and originally derived from it, is
natural gas. There is no way of telling how great the supply of this has
been in the past, how much there is in reserve, or what the present
outflow is, because the waste of natural gas has been and is notorious.
We do know, however, that the per capita consumption in 1915, according
to the U. S. Geological Survey, was approximately four times the
consumption of artificial gas, and seven times that of the by-product
coke-oven gas, and that its average price to the consumer was sixteen
cents a thousand cubic feet as against ninety-one cents for artificial
gas and ten cents for coke-oven gas. About one-third of the natural gas
is used for domestic purposes, about two-thirds is used for manufacture.
It is conservatively estimated that 100,000,000 gallons of gasoline can
be recovered from it annually and it is the primary source of the lamp
black from which all the printers' ink in present use is made. The
supply of natural gas in reserve is not calculable, but since most of
the wells show a diminished flow, it is believed to be on the way to

Although the supplies of oil and gas have supplemented coal for half a
century and protected the coal industry from the same sort of economic
pressure which has forced reorganization upon most other enterprises,
the time is at hand when they can no longer do so.

The imaginative appeal of hydroelectric power has led many people to
hope that water-power electricity would come to the aid of coal and
possibly replace it. But Mr. Charles P. Steinmetz, of the General
Electric Company, tells us that the total available water power of the
United States has been variously estimated at from fifty to one hundred
million horse-power, that is, from one-sixth to one-third of the
horse-power equivalent of our present annual coal production. He has
gone further and calculated the maximum possible value of all water
power beyond which the ultimate skill of invention could never possibly
go. If every raindrop which falls anywhere in the United States,
allowing only for the amount of water needed by agriculture and the loss
due to seepage and evaporation, were collected and all the power which
it could develop in its journey to the sea were efficiently utilized,
the resultant energy would amount to just about the same as the total
which we get out of our present coal consumption for all purposes. Water
power--hydroelectric energy--can never replace coal.

The waste of both petroleum and gas has been largely due to the
unrestrained acquisitive instinct seeking quick wealth in response to
the cry of the steam engine for more and more fuel. They were drafted
into service because they could do the work of coal and do it more
efficiently. But their diminishing supply makes it impossible for them
longer to stave off the impending technical revolution in the coal
industry. The miners are growing restive under the evils of intermittent
employment, uncertain income, and demoralizing conditions of living. The
public begins to rebel against irregularity of supply and ruinously high
prices. The antiquated transportation system creaks and staggers under a
load which the advance of technical science makes it unnecessary for it
longer to carry.

All these, taken together with the still-increasing demand for power to
drive on production and pile up a surplus on which to base an advancing
civilization, are forcing a new technical revolution upon the coal

                                CHAPTER IX

                         THE TECHNICAL REVOLUTION

The economic surplus which the industrial revolution of the latter
eighteenth century created was the product of a crude, extensive
exploitation of our natural resources. With the aid of the steam engine
men skimmed the cream of the mines, the forests, and the new soil of the
American continent.

The wasteful use of our coal, paralleling as it did our increasing need
for power, was hampering the industries of the country even before the
war. After the breaking out of the conflict the overwhelming pressure
for increased production could not be met. In a panic we pushed our old
methods of coal exploitation further than ever before, drew on our oil
and gas supplies to the utmost, and then in final desperation integrated
the administrative side of the coal industry through the Fuel

The relief this brought was immediate, although the chief work of the
Fuel Administration was merely to systematize and coordinate the
distribution of coal so that those who must have it would get it. For
during wartime the factories must run, and the autocratic integration
which the Fuel Administration accomplished created a seeming abundance
by keeping the factory wheels of at least the essential industries

But the relief was only apparent--not actual. When the tumult of the
war was over and we were back in still water, Secretary Lane announced
that the enormous development of war industries had created an almost
insatiable demand for power--a demand that was overreaching the
available supply with such rapidity that had hostilities continued, it
is certain that by 1920 we should have been facing an extreme power
shortage. Integrated administration had done all it could but the
problem of power to advance civilization--to build up a surplus through
production--to give all men the chance of the good life, was still
unsolved. Just as the integration by the Fuel Administration had
deferred the acute power shortage during the war, so the business
depression that followed the signing of the armistice is still holding
it in check. And yet if civilization is to go on, our multitudinous
factory wheels must turn again more swiftly and in increasing number,
our looms must weave more and more cloth, and new cars and new ships
must carry new millions of people to and fro. As yet we know no other
material means through which to build up the good life than these
whirling wheels.

The technical experts have agreed that the problem must be solved
through the integration of all our sources of fuel and power which they,
like the Fuel Administration during the war, regard as a common
reservoir like the water supply of a modern community, and through the
reduction of both coal and water power to terms of their common
denominator, electricity. As the result of Secretary Lane's prevision of
the impending power shortage, Congress in 1921 made an appropriation for
a preliminary survey by the technical experts of the power resources
along the Atlantic seaboard from Washington to Boston and for one
hundred and fifty miles inland. This territory has been called the
"finishing shop" of America. It is of irregular coast line, giving good
harbors for the shipping to carry its products overseas; its swift
streams turned the first factory wheels in America; its mountain ranges
are full of metals and easily accessible coal; and to this region the
industrially trained peoples of Europe most naturally come. Obviously
its factory wheels must turn.

As a result of the survey of this region, engineers have worked out what
is called the Superpower Plan. According to this, a giant network of
wire will be woven over the territory between the Alleghenies and the
Atlantic seaboard and charged with the very essence of power. Great
steel towers, like those that now carry the currents generated at
Niagara Falls, the Keokuk Dam on the Mississippi, and the Roosevelt Dam
at the head of Salt River in the Arizona Desert, will stride through the
valleys and across the mountains along a two-hundred-foot right of way.
Instead of steel rails and puffing engines to convey industrial power,
there will be only towers and copper wires. Instead of millions of tons
of raw coal moving slowly along through bottle necks in the mountains
and through congested freight yards, there will be the silent rush of
uncounted electrons hurrying to the centers of production to do the work
of man. Instead of spreading dirt and noise and ugliness, these new
carriers of cosmic energy will be high harps for the wind.

According to this plan of the Superpower Commission the main line of
this new power system begins at Washington and follows the coast through
the great centers of population--Baltimore, Wilmington, Philadelphia,
Newark, New York, New Haven, Providence, Boston, and on up to
Newburyport. Stretching away from this main line two principal inland
lines are projected, one swinging off at Baltimore out to Harrisburg and
up the anthracite valley to Scranton; another leaving the main line just
before it reaches New York and stretching up the Hudson Valley to
Poughkeepsie, Port Jervis, and Utica, tapping the hydroelectric
generating stations in the Adirondacks, and connecting again through
Pittsfield, Northampton, and Worcester with the main line in Boston.
North and south cross lines mesh these secondary lines with the main
line along the coast--one through Hartford and Waterbury to New Haven,
and another from Worcester to Providence, with a short branch line to
New Bedford. Back and forth across this network of high-tension wires
will run the power to turn the factory wheels.

About nine-tenths of this power will be the developed energy of coal.
The Superpower Commission's plan calls for the establishment of great
steam-generating plants near the mines where the coal will be used to
fire steam engines which will turn dynamos and so convert the energy of
coal into electricity and feed it to that great harp in the wind.
Steam-generating plants to supply more distant consumers are projected
at tidewater--that is at places to which coal can be delivered by
coastwise steamers. Incidentally these tidewater plants involve a
considerable amount of coal haulage from the mines to the seaports, and
from the ports nearest the mines to the other ports along the coast;
from the lower West Virginia fields, across the mountains, to the
southern end of Chesapeake Bay and thence by boat northward along the
coast to Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire. En
route this coal will be joined by other coal from the upper West
Virginia and the lower Pennsylvania bituminous fields and also by coal
from the middle Pennsylvania field which will have to be freighted
through New Jersey to the Hudson ports, then again up Long Island Sound
by steamdrawn barges. While great economies would be effected by the
transformation of coal into electric energy at the superpower stations,
both at the mines and at the tidewater ports, the plan of the Superpower
Commission still involves the necessity of hauling millions of tons of
raw coal from the mines to seaboard. This limitation the Commission held
to be necessary, not only for the purpose of utilizing the comparatively
small plants which existing public utility companies have already built,
but because at the time their report was made the electrical engineers
had not yet perfected means of transporting electricity for long
distances without great leakage on the way. Since the Commission's
survey was published, however, an invention has been announced which
greatly increases the distance over which the high-voltage currents can
be efficiently sent, so that it is now feasible to transmute a much
larger proportion of coal into electricity at the mine. The plan for
practically all the tidewater generating plants can be given up,
together with the long, slow, costly process of carrying coal to them,
and that ninety per cent of the electricity for the superpower system
which is derived from coal can be generated directly at the mine.

The other ten per cent according to the Commission's plan will be
hydroelectric power. Generating stations are to be established at the
rapids of the Potomac just above Washington; along the lower reaches of
the Susquehanna in Pennsylvania and Maryland; along the upper courses of
the Delaware and the Hudson; in the Adirondacks; and at intervals along
the whole length of the Connecticut River. But the main dependence of
the projected superpower system is still the bituminous coal supply
which it is planned to keep at its old job of raising steam to drive the
turbine engines which will in turn drive the electric dynamos.

Besides the Commission's superpower plan for the Atlantic seaboard,
other power systems have been sketched out, one centering around Helena
in southern Illinois and designed to serve most of the Mississippi
Valley, one near the northwest coast, another in California.

The integration of water and coal is a long step toward the solution of
the power problem, in that it not only brings a new force to supplement
the coal supply but also saves the coal now used by steam locomotives to
haul raw fuel to its millions of consumers. Moreover, it contemplates
the electrification of all the railroads within the zone whose traffic
is heavy enough to warrant it, and as it is estimated that two pounds of
coal applied to an electric locomotive will do as much work as seven and
one-half to eight and one-half pounds when applied to a steam
locomotive, the amount of coal now used for transportation will be still
further reduced. Through such beginnings as these projected superpower
systems must come the comprehensive integration of the industry.

But the Federal Commission's superpower plan as published is only a
beginning. It is not enough merely to save the energy of coal, to
relieve the congestion on the freight railroads, and to provide a
common-carrier system for high-voltage electricity. There is needed also
the more intensive utilization of the fuel supply. The plan of the
Superpower Commission regards coal--bituminous coal especially--as
nothing more than fuel. The industrial revolution was built upon the
power of coal to fire the boilers in steam engines. But the use of coal
for the generation of steam only is almost the least efficient way in
which it can be utilized. From the point of view of national economy the
better utilization of what are known as the by-product values of
bituminous coal is quite as important as the establishment of an
integrated power system.

For coal is much more than potential power. Bituminous coal is the
source of many of our most valuable mineral products and yet today, of
the more than 500,000,000 tons annually produced, almost all is used
exclusively for the production of power and all of its ingredients
except the heat-producing elements are wasted. About one-twelfth of the
bituminous coal--that which is now used for the production of coke in
ovens that recover its by-product--must be excepted from this statement.
Moreover, the 90,000,000 tons of anthracite mined every year are
economically used because anthracite contains practically nothing but
carbon and ash and its direct burning is the most efficient way in which
it can be used if its energy content is thoroughly conserved. Omitting,
then, the whole of the anthracite supply, and that bituminous which is
already properly utilized, we still have more than 400,000,000 tons
wastefully used every year--so wastefully that not only are all its
commodity values destroyed, but its primary purpose of creating heat and
industrial power is imperfectly served. In the effective integration of
fuel and power it will become necessary to separate the energy-producing
elements in bituminous coal--and also of the sub-bituminous coal, of
lignite and peat, of which we have reserves amounting to the billions of
tons--from those which have only a commodity value.

In their report made for the Smithsonian Institution, Gilbert and Pogue
point out that "there are in one ton of good bituminous coal, fifteen
hundred pounds of smokeless fuel analogous to anthracite, ten thousand
cubic feet of gas, twenty-two pounds of ammonium sulphate, two and
one-half gallons of benzol, and nine gallons of tar" and that lignite
gives almost as much of these commodities. Apart from the fuel values
represented by the "smokeless fuel analogous to anthracite" the gas and
benzol, the ammonium sulphate, and tar have unique values as
fertilizers, and the source of those mineral elements from which our
dyes and a large part of our modern medicines are made. The process used
to extract these commodity values is similar to that which nature used
in making anthracite, except that the volatile matter which the
geological revolution drove off into the air is collected and utilized.

The gas created by the process can be delivered by pipe lines over
practically any distance to the centers of consumption, or, with the
help of the internal-combustion engine, converted into electrical energy
at the mine. Gas as a fuel has the great advantage that it eliminates
both storage and haulage, and produces the same amount of heat from
about one-half the amount of coal, and since it can be produced as
needed all the year round it will go far to eliminate the seasonal
character of coal mining. Moreover, wherever heat rather than light or
power is desired, gas, in the present state of technical development, is
even more economical than electricity. Under the by-product system the
present annual coal output can be made to more than double its service
in driving machinery and in addition it can be made to contribute
heavily to our supply of fertilizers, motor fuel, and chemical
products. It is estimated that the aggregate loss resulting from the
present wasteful utilization of coal is over ten dollars a year for each
inhabitant of the United States.

The by-products of coal can play an important part in the fuel industry.
Where it is thoroughly integrated they can help in financing the
development of hydroelectricity to supplement the electricity produced
from coal. For while the running expenses of a hydroelectric plant are
little more than the interest on the capital invested, the amount of
that capital is large. Also the establishment of gas plants at the mines
is a costly thing. The temptation is to revamp and repair and reorganize
the present outworn and wasteful system rather than make large new
investments and scrap the old equipment. But in the commercial value of
the by-products from bituminous coal lies the possibility of paying for
the new power to turn our factory wheels by the sale of dyes and
fertilizer and medicines and tar and explosives and perfumes and a
hundred other things. So it is to the chemical laboratories that we look
for the new values which may make a superpower system financially
possible just as it is to the electrical workshop that we look for the
inventions which will integrate it into one thing.

But even the recovery and sale of the by-products of coal are not all
that is involved in the new way of supplying the world with power. While
gas can yield the full fuel value of coal in a more efficient form than
solid fuel, as well as all the commodity values, if it is converted into
power through the steam engine, at least one-half of its energy value is
lost. To conserve its full value, gas must be burned in the
internal-combustion engine, the most familiar type of which is the one
we know under the hood of the automobile and the most efficient type is
the Diesel engine which has made the by-product system industrially

The internal-combustion engine is a relatively simple device for
transforming the energy in fuel into power directly instead of
indirectly as the steam engine does, of turning wheels at first hand, of
cutting out steam as a middleman. It greatly enlarges the range of fuel
utilization because it can burn not only fuel gas and the lighter
oils--gasoline, benzol, and their close kin--but also fuel alcohol, the
supply of which though hitherto only slightly developed will last as
long as the sun and rain make vegetation grow in the soil. Our future
success in winning and holding an economic surplus upon which the
opportunity for the good life and a world civilization depends, rests
almost as largely upon the internal-combustion engine as the industrial
revolution depended upon the steam engine of Newcomen and Watt.

When the internal-combustion engine has been adequately developed, and
that time is near at hand, it will be economically possible to establish
the great superpower stations at the mines, to integrate the electricity
flowing from their gas-driven dynamos with the flow from the
hydroelectric stations on the great rivers and mountain streams, and to
use the surplus gas and smokeless coal to supply the domestic consumer
during the period of transition from our present wasteful fuel and power
system to the new system which will give us heat and power with the turn
of a button on an electric switch.

In our solution of the fuel problem there must be an extension of such
work as that of the Fuel Administration which integrated the
administrative side of the industry as by a man in a high tower with all
the resources and needs of the country spread beneath him. He must see
all the sources of power as in a common reservoir--all the coal and oil
and gas and water power--all the fuel alcohol and those subtle forces
within the material atoms themselves which scientists dream of forcing
to do the work of man. He must sort and deliver power to fill the need,
this in the form of oil or gas sent through its own pipe line; this
still in the bulky form of coal or coke by rail or water to those few
industries which can take no substitute; and more and more of it
transmuted into electricity and poured along the singing wires, or later
perhaps through the pathways of the air itself, to turn the wheels of

And in addition to the actual pooling of the power resources of the
country, there must come their intensive and economical use--economical
by more standards than that of money alone--so that the miner who blasts
the coal from the face, the man who sinks the oil well or runs the
internal-combustion engine or strings the electric wires, will get in
return for the thousands of tons of coal he has mined or the kilowatt
hours he has generated from his dynamo, the material basis of the good

This integrated industry of which the mining of coal, the projected
superpower systems, the pumping of oil, the development of water power,
and the organization and training of those who produce or consume power
are essential parts, is the inevitable result of the development that
has gone before. Just as the industrial revolution had its beginnings in
the coordination of the steam engine, the coal mines, and the factory
machinery, and its incentive in the drive of the acquisitive instinct to
make existence possible; so this new industrial advance, the integration
of the power that drives industry, is the logical result of the
development of long-distance electric transmission, the intense
utilization of the fuel supply, and the invention of the
internal-combustion engine, and it may result not only in making
existence possible but in making life good.

                                 CHAPTER X

                              THE STRAIT GATE

Since the days when the cosmic energy of coal was first harnessed to the
looms of England, mechanical contrivances of almost miraculous ingenuity
have followed one another in such rapid succession that men have come to
place undue reliance upon machinery for the solution of the difficult
human problems that impede progress toward the good life and a worthy
civilization. Just as the earlier generations failed in the spiritual
preparedness necessary to the conversion of the technical triumphs of
Newcomen and Watt, Fulton and Stephenson, and a host of others to the
higher ends of civilization, so our generation shows a similar
disposition to rely upon the wonder workers of mechanical science to
save us from the disastrous consequences of muddling along in the field
of human relations whether in industry, in the nation, or among the
nations. But the good life is not to be won by mechanical invention
alone. One of the outstanding lessons of the World War was that great
inventions in the realm of the physical and chemical sciences may be
destructive of the very civilization which it is their higher mission to
serve. Unless we have the spiritual capacity to make the technique of
science obedient to the commandment to love our neighbor as ourselves,
superpower systems, high-voltage transmission, the internal-combustion
engine, may again intensify the exploitation of man by man, the clash
of groups for power, the brutality of international wars for

We men and women of the twentieth century have developed a complacent
habit of priding ourselves upon our scientific open-mindedness, our
respect for facts, our eagerness to accept the revelations of authentic
scientific investigation and experiment. As we mount into the clouds on
the wings of the aeroplane or catch the voice of the radio operator out
of ethereal space, we have a tremendous sense of intellectual
emancipation, a thrill of escape from ancient bigotries and
superstitions. There is some warrant for this self-congratulatory
attitude in so far as it relates to the physical sciences. We have
reason to be proud that we have banished the primitive fears that led an
earlier age to persecute men like Galileo for telling the truth with
respect to the place of the earth in the stellar universe. We are
sufficiently emancipated to know that the inventors of the dynamo, the
turbine engine, the spectroscope, wireless telegraphy, and high-voltage
electrical transmission are not guilty of heresy. When Steinmetz forges
a thunderbolt and sends it crashing across his laboratory, we do not
burn him for witchcraft. The inquirers into the nature of the atom, the
structure of the cerebral ganglia, or the chemical composition of the
nebulae in the Milky Way are free from medieval taboos.

But unfortunately we have not developed an equally enlightened attitude
toward the inquirers into the nature of human relations in politics or
industry, or toward those who would apply the experimental method to the
development and scientific reconstruction of industrial or political
government. Terms like _trusts_, _the money power_, _trade unions_,
_industrial autocracy_, _collective bargaining_, _socialism_,
_bolshevism_, _private monopoly_, _public ownership_, stir all our
ancient fears, resentments, and hates. Men may be unorthodox in the
physical sciences; we are growing tolerant of unorthodoxy in religious
opinion. But unorthodoxy in the realm of politics is still frowned upon.
We still imprison men for their political and economic opinions when
they challenge the finality of accepted institutions and especially when
they advocate the fundamental reconstruction of accepted forms of
political and economic government. Yet it is quite as true in the realm
of human relations, as in that of the physical sciences, that the truth
and the truth only can make us free. Human brotherhood can be achieved
only through human understanding.

It is a commonplace to say that the vigorous growth of democracy depends
upon education. But much repetition has dulled the vital implications of
the assertion. We tend to forget that a democracy that permits essential
knowledge to be withheld from general circulation digs its own grave;
that while men talk of emancipation and freedom, ignorance may forge
chains for their enslavement. When any group within the community is
permitted to treat facts essential to the development of right human
relations as "trade secrets," education itself becomes stereotyped and
sterile. Text-books and "lessons" become spiritually and intellectually
empty, like the prayers which certain Eastern cults pin to wheels that
spin idly in the wind.

The authentic prophets of democracy have constantly striven to keep the
channels of popular education free from the clogging muck of
selfishness, superstition, and prejudice. They have had faith in the
essential justice and ultimate wisdom of informed public opinion. Such
men have appeared in government, among the coal owners, among the
miners, who are the commoners of the coal industry.

In 1914 the coal operators of Illinois and Indiana issued a _Statement
of Facts_ for the enlightenment of the Government and the people. The
normal state of the coal industry, they declared, was such as to
"endanger the lives of the miners, waste the coal reserves, and deprive
the operators of any hope of profit." They therefore appealed for
"appropriate and definite governmental control" to the extent "at least
of permitting all their activities to be known to the public." They thus
approved of the action of Congress in creating the Federal Trade
Commission "to gather and compile information concerning, and to
investigate from time to time the organization, business, conduct,
practices, and management of any corporation engaged in commerce ... and
to make public from time to time such portions of the information
obtained by it, except trade secrets and names of customers, as it shall
deem expedient in the public interest." The coal operators went further
than Congress since they made no reservations with respect to trade
secrets. But after the armistice, the organized operators of the nation,
through one of their members, secured an injunction restraining the
Federal Trade Commission from prosecuting its work of investigation and
publicity, the effect of which was to render the Federal Trade
Commission Act null and void so far as the education of the public with
respect to the coal industry was concerned. In the language of a
senator, this action "tied the Government's hands and poked out its

With a view to remedying certain of the major evils that interfered with
the service of the coal industry to the nation, Senators Calder,
Frelinghuysen, and Kenyon introduced bills and conducted public
hearings. They had concluded that what Congress and the public needed to
know if they were to legislate fairly and intelligently was the full
truth about "ownership, production, distribution, stocks, investments,
costs, sales, margins, and profits in the coal industry and trade." But
in 1921, the organized operators of the country, feeling that they could
conduct the industry most successfully without governmental supervision
or the scrutiny of informed public opinion, opposed all attempts at
legislation designed to accomplish the precise ends which in 1914 the
operators of Illinois and Indiana regarded as essential to the best
interests of all concerned. In reviewing the history of the efforts
which he and his colleagues had made to get at and publish the facts,
Senator Frelinghuysen reported to Congress that "though we made every
concession that we felt justified in making, we find, after two years of
conference and the price of coal still high, that practically all of
these operators, organized and unorganized, are bitterly opposing the
principle of these two bills--first, the season freight rate bill, and
second the bill 'to aid in stabilizing the coal industry'--and have
organized an elaborate propaganda with a view to bringing about their
defeat.... The National Coal Association has been the chief defender of
the coal trade since I became interested in the subject.... For a time I
looked upon the men of this organization as fair and reasonable and I
sympathized with their demand that the coal trade be permitted to work
out its own salvation without Government interference, provided full
statistics were obtainable regarding cost of production, transportation,
and delivery to the humblest consumer. For a time they seemed willing
to concede this. But I am finally and reluctantly convinced that my
hope in that direction has always been a delusion."

After devoting two years to a vain attempt to get at "full statistics,"
Senator Frelinghuysen lost patience with the operators. But he forgot
that many of their leaders still sincerely adhere to Mr. Baer's faith
that God has entrusted the interests of the community to the owners of
property and that congressional interference, even when limited to the
ascertainment of statistics, is subversive not only of the status of the
owners as trustees of the nation's fuel resources, but also of the
public interest itself. This conviction of the operators is a fact that
must be weighed without impatience like any fact in chemistry or

The position of many labor leaders is fundamentally the same as that of
the operators. They have the traditional fear of the autocratic power
which they believe to be inherent in the state. Like the operators, they
are convinced that the public interest is best served when each and all
of the groups within industry are left free to pursue their special
interests with utmost aggressiveness, on the theory that the clash of
many selfishnesses results, as by a law of nature, in the neutralization
of selfishness and its conversion into public advantage. It is utopian
folly, they say, to attempt to change "human nature," the dominant
characteristic of which they hold to be the acquisitive instinct, and
equally vain to attempt to modify the natural operation of the "law of
supply and demand," which, in their judgment, transcends the
"idealistic" law of service. They agree that it is unfortunate that this
should be so, but since it is so, does it not behoove practical men to
act accordingly? There are many men of this mind among the leaders and
rank and file of the miners, as well as among the operators.

But the creative impulse back of the organized labor movement is by
virtue of necessity the democratic impulse, and where the democratic
impulse is vigorous it feeds upon the consciousness of kind whose
principal channel of growth is knowledge. In their national convention,
held in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1919, the miners adopted a resolution
calling upon the Government, "through Act of Congress, to acquire title
to the coal properties within the United States now owned by private
interests; by purchasing said properties at a figure representing the
actual valuation of said properties, as determined upon investigation by
accredited agents of the federal Government." They asked that "the coal
mining industry be operated by the federal Government and that the
miners be given equal representation upon such councils or commissions
as may be delegated the authority to administer the affairs of the coal
mining industry...." The stated object of the resolution was to secure
the operation of the industry "in the interest of, and for the use and
comfort of all of the people of the commonwealth ..." and "to prevent
the profligate waste that is taking place under private ownership of
these resources by having the Government take such steps as may be
necessary providing for the nationalization of the coal mining industry
of the United States."

As to the relative merits of the policy of national ownership as
advocated by the United Mine Workers of America, and the policy of free
competition and unrestrained private initiative advocated by the
organized operators, it is for the informed public ultimately to judge.
For two years, the miners' nationalization resolution stood as the
expression of a more or less vague aspiration, a more or less vague
faith that public ownership would check overdevelopment and so eliminate
the humanly demoralizing effects of intermittent production and
irregularity of employment. Nationalization, the miners believed, would
go far to correct the disastrous moral and physical effects of a
situation which on an average of ninety-three days in each working year,
deprives them of the opportunity to work.

At their next national convention, held in Indianapolis in 1921, they
themselves recognized the controversial nature of their nationalization
policy. So they moved to less debatable ground. They created a
Nationalization Research Committee to get at and secure the publication
of facts. In his first public address as chairman of this
Nationalization Research Committee, Mr. John Brophy, president of the
organized miners in district No. 2, Central Pennsylvania, instead of
dogmatizing about the miners' policy of public ownership and democratic
administration as the infallible remedy for the evils of the coal
industry, appealed to the public, the operators, and the miners "to stop
theoretical squabbling and cooperate with us in making all facts about
the industry available to the public. We believe in intelligently
planned industry. We believe that the only method for the intelligent
organization of the industry is nationalization. The employers disagree.
In order to arrive at a decision we ask them to submit the facts to the
American people, the only jury that has a right to pass judgment on the
case.... We ask immediate legislation for centralized, continuous, and
compulsory fact-finding in the coal industry."

A democracy that acquiesces in its own ignorance of the elementary facts
respecting an industry upon which, not only its own economic life, but
also the economic life and civilized progress of the entire world so
largely depends, betrays the high privilege and responsibility of a
self-governing citizenship. Today neither the public nor the Government
knows whether the coal industry is fairly capitalized, what the extent
and value of the coal reserves are, whether depreciation and depletion
charges are reasonable, or what are the profits and losses of the
industry. Nobody knows whether the prices which the consumer is required
to pay are fair and reasonable. Nobody knows precisely what the
preventable wastes of the industry are. The annual wages of the miners
are not subject to precise statistical statement, nor does anyone know
the number of hours the miners work when the mines are in operation or
the number of hours they are given opportunity to work. The statements
we have are for the most part large averages based upon inductions from
small cross-sections of the industry. The working conditions of the
miners, the technical state of the organization of work underground, the
cost of living at the more than eleven thousand mines, remain in the
foggy realm of guesswork, estimate, and speculation. In the face of
conditions which, as the operators of Illinois and Indiana stated in
1914, "endanger the lives of the miners, waste the coal reserves, and
deprive the operators of any hope of profit," the people, like the
people's government, are ignorantly helpless. In the absence of
essential information, the public especially at times of controversy
within the industry is left to the mercy of prejudiced and partisan

"I think it is plain folly," Dr. Garfield, formerly head of the Fuel
Administration, testified before the Senate Committee on Manufactures,
"not to provide for a continuous finding of the facts as to the cost of
production, as to the stocks of coal on hand, as to the working
conditions in the mines, and as to the cost of living.... We cannot get
along as a Government or as an industry, whether you think of it from
the standpoint of the operators or mine workers, without knowing the
facts, and the public is also vitally interested in these facts."

The U. S. Geological Survey has in the past issued:

1. Annual report on the production of coal by counties and by producing
fields. 2. Annual report on the movement of coal, showing the state or
locality to which coal produced in each district is shipped; and the
origin, by producing fields, of the coal consumed in each state or
locality. 3. Current reports at frequent intervals, showing production
of coal, operating conditions at the mines, and the movement of coal by
rail and by water to various consuming districts. 4. Occasional reports
on stocks of coal in the hands of representative consumers. 5. Annual
reports on consumption by the larger users. 6. Special reports.

But while the methods to be used in these reports have been worked out,
not all of them are being carried on permanently, the reason being lack
of funds. The latest detailed annual report on the movement of coal is
for 1918, and it is uncertain when another can be prepared. The current
reports are inadequate and the reports on stocks and consumption are
issued only at irregular intervals.

Even the annual reports of production leave untouched many subjects of
vital importance. We have no quantitative information, on a national
scale, as to the amount of coal cleaned; the amount of mine-run, slack,
and prepared sizes produced; the mechanical equipment of the mines; the
depth of the coal workings; the distance the miner must traverse from
mine mouth to working face; the dip of the coal seam; the tonnage
produced by long-wall or room-and-pillar methods; the quantity of coal
in the ground lost to the nation each year, in the roof, in pillars,
because of squeezes; or the quantity lost in thin seams not now minable
which are broken and fractured by the mining of lower seams. We do not
know accurately how fast electrical haulage is replacing animal haulage
underground, what progress the loading machine is making in relieving
human backs of the labor of shoveling coal into cars. Of course, any
operator and any miner knows of these things in a general way in his own
locality, but such scattered, hazy, local knowledge will not suffice. We
must have accurate information, national in scope.

In the realm of the financing of coal companies the ignorance of the
public is almost complete. We do not know the capital value of the coal
deposits, nor the degree of concentration and control of ownership of
mines or mineral. We do not even know who owns the coal beds. There is
no list of the landholding companies who as landlords absorb in many
districts the economic rent paid by the mines working favorable seams.
We do not know the prevailing royalty rates, we do not know whether or
not there is a soft-coal trust. The most basic of our American
industries moves in fog by day and blackness by night.

The social creeds of the Christian churches will remain the expressions
of vague aspirations until they are supplemented by the knowledge
essential to their concrete definition. Men and women who profess
allegiance to the Great Commandments of Jesus have come to realize that
the Kingdom of God on Earth, the Brotherhood of Man, cannot be built by
fiat or verbal proclamation. The building of a worthy civilization is as
definitely an engineering enterprise as the building of the Panama
Canal. It demands a scientific procedure and a patient devotion as
thoroughgoing as that which during the past two hundred years has gone
into the development of the steam engine, the aeroplane, or high-tension
electric transmission. The theory of nationalization, like the theory of
collective bargaining and the traditional theory of progress by free
competition, must each be tested, as the existing social and industrial
order must be tested, in the light of painfully ascertained facts, and
in terms of their effect upon the individual personality.

For it is only in the light of the truth that we shall be able to build
a civilization in which the individual personality may find full
fruition. It is only by the aid of knowledge and human understanding
that we shall be able to resolve the drama of civilization into a
victory of the consciousness of kind over the warfaring acquisitive
instinct. It is only by making the technique of science obedient to the
Great Commandments of Jesus that we shall be able to build a
civilization worthy of a world that moves through infinite space with
the sun and the marching stars.

                               WHAT TO READ

                               A SELECT LIST

  _American Economic Review_. New Haven, Conn. Supplement. March, 1921.

    $Four-Hour Day in Coal.$ N. Y. H. W. Wilson Co. 1922. 148 pp.

    $Coal Miners' Insecurity;$ Facts about Irregularity of Employment in
    the Bituminous Coal Industry in the United States. N. Y. Russell Sage
    Foundation. 1922. 50 pp.

    See United Mine Workers of America, District No. 2, and United Mine
    Workers of America, Nationalization Research Committee.

    $Coal Fields of the United States.$ Wash. Govt. Printing Office. 1917.
    33 pp. (U. S. Geological Survey. Prof. paper. 100-4.) Map, tables,

  COMMONS, J. R., ed.
    $Trade Unionism and Labor Problems,$ 2d series. Boston. Ginn & Co.
    1921. 838 pp.

    Edgar Sydenstricker. Settlement of Disputes under Agreement in the
    Anthracite Industry. pp. 495-524.

    Ethelbert Stewart. Equalizing Competitive Conditions. pp. 525-533.

  COMMONS, J. R., and others
    $History of Labour in the United States.$ N. Y. Macmillan Co. 1918.
    2 vols.

  ECKEL, E. C.
    $Coal, Iron and War;$ A Study in Industrialism, Past and Future. N. Y.
    Henry Holt & Co. 1920. 375 pp.

    $History of the United Mine Workers of America from the Year 1860 to
    1900.$ Indianapolis. United Mine Workers of America. 1920. 2 vols.

    $Economic and Industrial Progress of the Century.$ Phila.
    Bradley-Garretson Co., Ltd. 1903. 524 pp.

    $Principles of Sociology.$ N. Y. Macmillan Co.

  GILBERT, C. G., and POGUE, J. E.
    $America's Power Resources;$ the Economic Significance of Coal, Oil and
    Water Power. N. Y. Century Co. 1921. 326 pp.

  GREAT BRITAIN. Coal Industry Commission
    $Reports and Minutes of Evidence.$ London. H. M. Stationery Office.
    1919. 3 vols. (Cmd. 359-361.)

    $Skilled Labourer, 1760-1832.$ N. Y. Longmans, Green & Co. 1919.
    397 pp.

    $Town Labourer, 1760-1832.$ N. Y. Longmans, Green & Co. 1918. 346 pp.

    $Village Labourer, 1760-1832;$ A New Civilization. N. Y. Longmans,
    Green & Co. 1921. 342 pp.

    $In Non-Union Mines;$ the Diary of a Coal Digger. N. Y. Bureau of
    Industrial Research. 1922. 48 pp.

    $Nationalization of the Mines.$ N. Y. Thomas Seltzer. Prof. d. 1920.

  LANE, W. D.
    $Civil War in West Virginia;$ A Story of the Industrial Conflict in the
    Coal Mines. N. Y. B. W. Huebsch. 1921. 128 pp.

  LAUCK, W. J.
    $Summary, Analysis and Statement Before the United States Anthracite
    Coal Commission.$ Wash. United Mine Workers of America. 1920. 44 pp.

    $The Trade Union as the Basis for Collective Bargaining,$ a Compilation
    of Sanctions and Experiences. Wash. United Mine Workers of America.
    1920. 171 pp.

    $What a Living Wage Should Be as Determined by Authoritative Budget
    Studies.$ Wash. United Mine Workers of America. 1920. 7 pp.

    $Organized Labor, Its Problems, Purposes and Ideals and the Present and
    Future of American Wage Earners.$ Phila. American Book and Bible House.
    1903. 436 pp.

  MOORE, E. S.
    $Coal;$ its Properties, Analysis, Classification, Geology, Extraction,
    Uses and Distribution. N. Y. John Wiley & Sons. 1922. 462 pp.

  MURRAY, W. S., and others
    $Superpower System for the Region between Boston and Washington.$ Wash.
    Govt. Printing Office. 1921. 261 pp. (U. S. Geological Survey,
    Professional Paper. 123.)

    $History of the Coal Miners of the United States, from the Development
    of the Mines to the Close of the Anthracite Strike of 1902.$ Columbus,
    O. J. L. Trauger Printing Co. 1907.

    $Saward's Annual;$ a standard statistical review of the coal trade, by
    Frederick W. Saward. N. Y. 1922. 254 pp.

    $Man and the Earth.$ N. Y. Chautauqua Press. 1907. 240 pp.

  SPUR, J. E., ed.
    $Political and Commercial Geology and the World's Mineral Resources$;$
    A Series of Studies by Specialists, 1st ed. N. Y. McGraw Book Co. 1920.

    $Coal.$ By G. S. Rice and F. F. Grout. pp. 22-54.

    $Conciliation and Arbitration in the Coal Industry of America.$
    Boston. Houghton Mifflin Co. 1915. 376 pp.

  _Survey Graphic_. New York
    $Coal Number.$ April, 1922.

    $Facts!$ Clearfield, Pa. 1921. 16 pp.

    $Government of Coal.$ Clearfield, Pa. 1921. 24 pp.

    $Miners' Program.$ Clearfield, Pa. 1921. 6 pp.

    $Why the Miners' Program?$ Clearfield, Pa. 1921. 10 pp.

  UNITED MINE WORKERS OF AMERICA. Nationalization Research Committee
    $Compulsory Information in Coal;$ a Fact-Finding Agency. Clearfield,
    Pa. John Brophy, President, U. M. W. of A., District No. 2. 1922.
    28 pp.

    $Majority and Minority Reports.$ Wash. Govt. Printing Office. 1920.
    120 pp.

    $Investigation of Wages and Working Conditions in the Coal-Mining
    Industry.$ Hearings on H. R. 11022. Wash. Govt. Printing Office. 1922.
    Vol. 1. 443 pp. Nolan Committee on Bland Bill.

    $West Virginia Coal Fields.$ Hearings pursuant to S. Res. 80. Wash.
    Govt. Printing Office. 1921. 2 vols. (67th Cong., 1st Sess.)

    $West Virginia Coal Fields.$ Personal views of Senator Kenyon and views
    of Senators Sterling, Phipps, and Warren. Wash. Govt. Printing Office.
    1922. 30 pp. (67th Cong., 2d Sess. S. Report No. 457.)

    $Increased Price of Coal.$ Hearings Before a Subcommittee Pursuant to
    S. Res. 126. Wash. Govt. Printing Office. 1919. 4 vols. (66th Cong.,
    1st Sess.) Frelinghuysen Committee.

    $Publication of Production and Profits in Coal.$ Hearings on S. 4828.
    Wash. Govt. Printing Office. 1921. 3 vols. (66th Cong., 3d Sess.) La
    Follette Committee.

    $Reconstruction and Production.$ Hearings pursuant to S. Res. 350.
    Wash. Govt. Printing Office. 1921. 3 vols. (66th Cong., 3d Sess.)

    $Cost Reports. Coal.$ June 30, 1919. Wash. Govt. Printing Office.

    $Report ... on Anthracite and Bituminous Coal.$ Wash. Govt. Printing
    Office. 1917. 420 pp.

    $Mineral Resources of the United States.$ Wash. Govt. Printing Office.

    $Weekly Report of Production.$ Wash. Geological Survey. 1917-date.

    $Reports; Immigrants in Industries.$ Wash. Govt. Printing  Office.
    1911. Vols. 6, 7, 16.

  WARNE, F. J.
    $Coal-Mine Workers;$ a Study in Labor Organization. N. Y. Longmans,
    Green & Co. 1905. 252 pp.

    $History of Trade Unionism.$ Rev. ed. extended to 1920. N. Y. Longmans,
    Green & Co. 1920. 784 pp.

    $Story of the Durham Miners (1662-1921).$ London. Fabian Society. 1921.
    145 pp.

                         COAL INDUSTRY--PERIODICALS

_Coal Age_. (Weekly.) McGraw-Hill Publishing Co. N. Y. 10th Ave. and
36th St. C. E. Lesher, editor.

_Coal Review_. (Weekly.) Official organ of National Coal Association.
Wash., D. C., Commercial National Bank Bldg., 14th and G Sts. John B.
Pratt, editor.

_United Mine Workers' Journal_. (Bi-monthly.) United Mine Workers of
America. Merchants Bank Bldg. Indianapolis. Ellis Searles, editor.


     Accidents                                          44-47, 81
     Acquisitive instinct                        9-12, 16, 18, 38
     Agriculture                                            23-24
     America                                                23-33
     American Federation of Labor                           57-58
     American miners' association                              53
     Anthracite industry                                       54
     Anthracite strike, 1902                     48, 62-64, 66-71
     Arbitration and conciliation      48-49, 54-56, 58-59, 63-65
     Associations                                           18-19
       (See also Miners' unions; Operators' associations.)
     Avondale disaster                                      45-46
     Baer, George F. (quoted)                             63, 107
     Blossburg, Pa.                                         41-42
     Brophy, John                                             109
     By-products of coal                                    96-99
     Calder, William M.                                       106
     Central competitive field                                 66
     Child labor                                            13-15
     Church and industry                                  50, 113
     Civil War (U. S.)                                 37, 41, 53
     Civilization                                           11-21
     Clearfield, Pa.                                           56
     Coal resources of U. S.                               26, 79
     Coal resources of world                           8-9, 78-79
     Collective bargaining                              54, 59-77
     Committee on war and the religious outlook                50
     Company stores                                         40-43
     Consciousness of kind                            9-12, 16-21
     Consumption of coal                                    80-81
     Economic surplus                                2, 10-12, 15
     England                                               22, 23
     Exploitation of coal                              24, 27, 38
     Fact finding                        35, 68, 105-107, 110-113
     Federal trade commission                             35, 105
     Finance                                                  112
     Frelinghuysen, Joseph S.                             106-107
     Fuel administration                             29-36, 90-91
     Garfield, G. A. (quoted)                             30, 111
     Geological survey                                    79, 111
     Geology of coal                                          4-6
     Giddings, F. H. (quoted)                                  17
     Gilbert, Chester G. (quoted)                       83-84, 97
     Gompers, Samuel                                        57-58
     Government investigations                            106-107
     Government regulation                                  27-36
       (See also Fuel administration; Nationalization.)
     Hammond, J. L. and Barbara (quoted)                    13-15
     Hanna, Mark                                           55, 63
     Hawkins, Sir John                                         13
     Hazards                                            44-47, 81
     Hoover, Herbert (quoted)                                  34
     Immigrant miners                                          42
     Imperialism                                               25
     Industrial democracy                                   50-53
     Industrial revolution                          2, 6-9, 22-23
     Inventions                                            8, 102
     Isolation                                                 40
     Kenyon, William S.                                       106
     Knights of labor                                      57, 61
     Lane, Franklin K.                                         91
     Leeky, W. E. H. (quoted)                                  13
     Lesher, C. E. (quoted)                                 31-32
     Lloyd, Thomas                                             53
     Management                                                76
     McBride, John                                             59
     Mine inspection                                        44-48
     Miners                                                 13-15
     Miners' job                                            43-44
     Miners' national association                           54-58
     Miners' unions                              20, 38-49, 52-65
     Mining law                                             44-48
     Mining towns                                              40
     Mitchell, John                                         61-65
     National civic federation                                 63
     National coal association                            72, 107
     National federation of miners and mine laborers           59
     Nationalization                                  77, 108-110
     Natural gas                                            87-88
     Operators                                         46-47, 105
     Operators' associations                       72-75, 106-107
     Overdevelopment                                    27-28, 59
     Parsons, Floyd W. (quoted)                                79
     Pennsylvania, Secretary of internal affairs               43
     Petroleum                                              83-87
     Pogue, Joseph E. (quoted)                          83-84, 97
     Population and coal                                      7-8
     Power                                         80, 88, 90-101
     Power distribution                                        80
     Public opinion                                        42, 44
     Public utility, coal as a                          31-32, 64
     Railroad administration                                31-32
     Railroads                                      28, 31-32, 80
     Rend, W. P.                                               59
     Roosevelt, Theodore                         48, 63-64, 66-67
     Roy, Andrew (quoted)                           39, 42, 44-45
     Rushmore, D. B. (quoted)                                  79
     Scrip                                                     42
     Sherman law                                           73, 77
     Shortage of coal                                          29
     Siney, John                                        54-56, 58
     Smith, G. O. (quoted)                                     80
     Solar power                                                1
     "Statement of facts"                                     105
     Steel industry                                         65-66
     Steinmetz, Charles P. (quoted)                            88
     Strikes                          40-41, 48, 62-64, 66-71, 75
     Superpower plan                               92-96, 100-101
     Transportation of coal                         28, 31-32, 80
     Tryon, F. G. (quoted)                                 27, 77
     Unemployment                                              81
     United mine workers of America                61-77, 108-109
     War                                                    2, 26
     Wastes                             26, 38, 59, 76, 80-82, 96
     Water power                                               88
     Weaver, Daniel                                         52-53
     Webb, Beatrice and Sidney (quoted)                     50-51
     West Virginia                          40, 48, 61, 65-66, 74
     Wilson, William B.                                        63
     Wilson, Woodrow                                           71
     Workingmen's benevolent association                       54

                     *       *       *       *       *

The table below lists all corrections applied to the original text.

  p 42: But curious sports -> sorts
  p 60: that the wide-spread -> widespread
  p 115: HAMMOND, J. L., -> [comma added]
  p 115: Town Labourer, -> [semicolon changed to comma]
  p 121: Naturalization -> Nationalization
  p 121: McBride, John -> shift after Management
  p 122: Parsons, Floyd W. -> shift after Overdevelopment

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