Fire and Brimstone: The North Butte Mining Disaster of 1917 [NOOK Book]

Overview

The true story of the worst hard-rock mining disaster in American history

The worst hard-rock mining disaster in American history began a half hour before midnight on June 8, 1917, when fire broke out in the North Butte Mining Company's Granite Mountain shaft. Sparked more than two thousand feet below ground, the fire spewed flames, smoke, and poisonous gas through a labyrinth of underground tunnels. Within an hour, more than four hundred men ...
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Fire and Brimstone: The North Butte Mining Disaster of 1917

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Overview

The true story of the worst hard-rock mining disaster in American history

The worst hard-rock mining disaster in American history began a half hour before midnight on June 8, 1917, when fire broke out in the North Butte Mining Company's Granite Mountain shaft. Sparked more than two thousand feet below ground, the fire spewed flames, smoke, and poisonous gas through a labyrinth of underground tunnels. Within an hour, more than four hundred men would be locked in a battle to survive. Within three days, one hundred and sixty-four of them would be dead.

Fire and Brimstone recounts the remarkable stories of both the men below ground and their families above, focusing on two groups of miners who made the incredible decision to entomb themselves to escape the gas. While the disaster is compelling in its own right, Fire and Brimstone also tells a far broader story--striking in its contemporary relevance.

Butte, Montana, on the eve of the North Butte disaster, was a volatile jumble of antiwar protest, an abusive corporate master, seething labor unrest, divisive ethnic tension, and radicalism both left and right. It was a powder keg lacking only a spark, and the mine fire would ignite strikes, murder, ethnic and political witch hunts, occupation by federal troops, and ultimately a battle over presidential power.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781401305710
  • Publisher: Hyperion
  • Publication date: 2/5/2013
  • Sold by: Hachette Digital, Inc.
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 447,374
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Michael Punke grew up on the North Platte River in Wyoming. During his teenage years he spent three summers as a "living history interpreter" at Fort Laramie National Historic Site. His professional experience includes work for a Montana senator and a stint on the White House Staff. He lives in Montana with his wife and two children.
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Table of Contents


"There Is a Sign"     1
"Like a Gigantic Torch"     8
"The Richest Hill on Earth"     16
"What Men Will Do"     26
"Sweetened Corruption"     40
"Helmet Men Braving Death"     47
"Standard Oil Coffins"     60
"Then We Met Duggan"     75
"Hey Jack, What the Hell"     84
"If the Worst Comes"     98
"Dreading to Look"     105
"Now Is the Time"     116
"Men Alive!"     122
"Bamboozeling or Abuse"     134
"Too Good Miners"     145
"In the Dark"     153
"We're Dying in Here"     161
"Point of Eruption"     169
"For You and the Child"     180
"Dupes and Catspaws"     188
"Others Take Notice"     202
"Spy Fever"     213
"What Will Become of Them"     226
"Some Little Body of Men"     235
"Down Deep"     253
Epilogue: "Normal for Its Time"     273
Acknowledgments     275
Notes     279
Index     325
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2007

    A reviewer

    This story blends hard-earned facts and historical data and fills the blanks with a sensitive story of humanity in the face of crisis.. the story is well done and believable, and I appreciate the author's imagination regarding the character's perspectives. I learned alot about Wobblies, unions in early 1900s, the copper barons, and the plight of the working man 'and women' in that era. Did you know Butte Montana had more population than any other city west of the Mississippi at the turn of the century? It makes you look at that big pit mine and the slag heaps and headframes, a bit differently. Be sure to visit the Berkeley Pit when travelling through Butte. I'll never travel through Butte again without thinking of the man who died on the ladder after saving countless lives by spreading the word of the fire and the routes to safety.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2010

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