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Hundreds March to Blair Mountain in Opposition to Coal Mining Plans

The mining industry in the U.S. may not have a well established sense of history but the people still do. When a mining company proposed blowing up the historic site of the worker’s uprising at Blair Mountain to gain access to the coal lying below it faced major opposition to its plans.

About 250 marchers have decided to trek 50 miles over the weekend to protest the mountain top removal mining that is planned in the town near the Boone Logan county border. The march to the town of Blair will follow the same route that about 10,000 coal miners took between August 24th, and September 4th, 1921 when trying to organize non-union miners in Logan County.

The March on Blair Mountain in 1921 is the largest armed conflict in American labor history. The battle between the miners who defended their position on Blair mountain top and the civil militia cost a number of lives before federal army soldiers reached the site and stopped the conflict.

Arch Coal and Alpha Natural Resources, which bought Massey Energy last week, now own much of Blair Mountain but if the environmentalists have anything to say they will not be conducting any mountain top removal coal mining on the site.

The protest has some celebrity leaders such as Robert F. Kennedy Jr, the environmental activist son of the late Bobby Kennedy and Chuck Keeney, great-grandson of Frank Keeney who was the president of the United Mine Workers District 17 during the 1921 March on Blair Mountain. The companies have not responded to the weekend march as yet.

Joel Scanlon

Written by

Joel Scanlon

Joel, originally from the UK, emigrated to Australia in 1995 and spent 5 years working in the mining industry as an exploration Geo-technician where he developed skills in GIS Mapping and CAD. Joel also spent a year working underground in a gold/copper mine. Upon moving to the North Coast of NSW, Australia Joel worked as a graphic designer for a leading consultancy firm before starting a successful business providing graphic and web design services to local businesses on the eastern seaboard of Australia. Joel is skilled in project management, web programming, design, animation, database and networking, software and editing. Joel has been with AZoNetwork since its inception in 2000.

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