The Plight of the Bituminous Coal Miner

The Plight of the Bituminous Coal Miner

The Plight of the Bituminous Coal Miner

The Plight of the Bituminous Coal Miner

Excerpt

In the spring of 1931 the Children's Bureau of the Federal Government made a careful survey of conditions among the children in the bituminous coal fields. The need in many of the coal camps had been intensified by bitter labor disputes and prolonged strikes. The industrial situation was so tense and the extent of malnourishment among the children was so great that the Children's Bureau and the President's Organization on Unemployment Relief requested the American Friends Service Committee of Philadelphia to undertake the task of providing relief for the children of the unemployed miners. A fund was allocated by the American Relief Administration for this purpose. A child-feeding program was started in the schools in the mining camps the latter part of September 19310.

The development of this program in 690 schools in forty- one counties in six states gave a corps of workers an unusual opportunity to study at first hand under the most friendly relationship the effects of unemployment in the bituminous coal industry. These contacts made the present study possible. The fieldwork for the study was financed by the Social Science Department of Fisk University and the American Friends Service Committee. The Social Science Research Council made a Grant-in-Aid to assist in the publication of the book.

I am indebted to many miners, operators, local officials, and community leaders for the assistance given during the course of the study. To mention the names of only a few people would be to ignore a great many others whose opinions and experiences have helped me to understand something of the human problems involved when a whole industry is going through the throes of a major deflation movement.

I have been saved from many errors and pitfalls in the preparation of the manuscript by the helpful suggestions and . . .

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