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1868 Coal Miners Strike in Wheeling

Wheeling Intelligencer
October 13, 1868


The Coal Miners’ Strike.

Wheeling, W. Va., Oct. 10, ’68.

Editor Intelligencer:

SIRS: We wish through the columns of your paper to make a few remarks upon the present strike among the coal miners. There appears to be a misunderstanding in regard to the cause of it. In the first place the strike is for an advance of a half cent on the bushel, which will be three cents per bushel. The strike is only at the rolling mill banks. The city or peddling banks pay four cents, and that wagon measure, while the mill bank only want to pay two and a half cents, bank measure. Now in most of the mill banks miners are obliged to fill 125 to 130 bushels in order to get out an hundred bushels, bank measure; so it is plain it takes a man of considerable skill to accomplish an hundred bushel. This is not all. It takes from 12 to 13 hours to do an ordinary day’s work; also the miner has to furnish his own tools, powder and oil, which are all very high and expensive at the present time; so when they have paid for these lights, powder and the wear and tear of tools, they have not an ordinary day’s wages, and deem themselves justified in standing out for the advance, and at a meeting held at the Court House, in the city of Wheeling, this Saturday evening, October 10th, have resolved not to go to work until they receive the advance, and we can see no reason why they cannot pay us the advance as well as to buy coal from other banks of an inferior quality, and pay from 12 to 13 cents for it at that, or which is the same, before they can get it into their mills. With these few remarks in our weak way, we would leave it to the reflection of those most interested; hoping it may find a place in your paper, as it is read by almost all the miners and manufacturers.

COAL MINER.


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