In the Kingdom of Coal: An American Family and the Rock That Changed the World

By Dan Rottenberg | Go to book overview

Acknowledgments

From conception to completion, this book took five years. I shudder to imagine how long it might have required, or whether it could have been undertaken at all, without the generous help of many people whose knowledge of coal far exceeds mine.

First and foremost among these is E. B. (Ted) Leisenring Jr. It was Ted who originally suggested the book and directed me to the awesome trove of company and family records at the Hagley Library in Wilmington, Delaware. (As chairman of Westmoreland Coal, Ted had donated these papers to the Hagley and was eager to see someone put them to use. ) Once the project was under way, Ted made himself available for countless hours of interviews, phone calls, and lunches, accompanied me on several trips, and introduced me to many useful people. Although Ted is one of the principal characters in this story and provided financial support for the endeavor, I can personally attest that his sole interest in this venture was intellectual. He neither sought nor received any control over the final manuscript, and readers should understand that any views expressed in this book are mine alone.

The papers of the Leisenring family’s various coal companies on file at the Hagley Library, wonderful as they are, would have overwhelmed a solitary researcher like me had not an expert archivist first sifted through them and organized them. I am therefore immensely grateful to Christopher T. Baer, curator of the Hagley’s Westmoreland collection, who organized the papers in 1984 and whose manuscript “Guide to the History of Penn Virginia Corporation and the Westmoreland Coal Company” provided a

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In the Kingdom of Coal: An American Family and the Rock That Changed the World
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Contents iii
  • Leisenring and Givens Family Trees ix
  • Chronology xi
  • Part I 11
  • Chapter 1 - A Rock That Burns 13
  • Chapter 2 - A Passage from the Mines 21
  • Chapter 3 - Holy Trinity 29
  • Chapter 4 - Boy Wonder of the Anthracite 37
  • Chapter 5 - Souls in Darkness 47
  • Chapter 6 - A Road Not Taken 57
  • Part II 65
  • Chapter 7 - The Ambitions of Henry Clay Frick 67
  • Chapter 8 - At War in the Coke Fields 75
  • Part III 99
  • Chapter 9 - Starting Over 101
  • Chapter 10 - The Rise of John L. Lewis 115
  • Chapter 11 - Utopia Goes Union 135
  • Chapter 12 - Be Careful What You Wish For 165
  • Chapter 13 - Prelude to Murder 187
  • Part IV 207
  • Chapter 14 - The Age of Uncertainty 209
  • Chapter 15 - Riding the Roller Coaster 231
  • Chapter 16 - Nowhere to Hide 245
  • Principal Characters 267
  • Notes 273
  • Bibliography 315
  • Acknowledgments 319
  • Index 321
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