History 430: Theory and Practice

Document Type

Undergraduate Research

Publication Date

Fall 12-10-2009


In the United States the Industrial Revolution brought about many new occupational hazards for workers. This was true for most jobs, but few were more dangerous than that of coal mining in the Crawford-Cherokee region of Kansas and the other main mining areas such as West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Colorado, and Utah. Between 1887 and 1926 there was a great series of accidents, explosions in particular, which became a catalyst for policy change in regards to coal mining safety. Initial measures that were put into place to protect miners from accidents proved to be inadequate. And even with the advent of new technologies and techniques that could be used to protect the lives of miners, companies often did not institute policies to include these because of increased costs. Eventually states and some companies would both require more effective safety techniques to be used.