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Fatal Boiler Explosion at the Henry Clay Colliery
The Sandusky Register, Ohio
October 12, 1894
Shamokin, Pa., Oct. 11. -- Four men were killed, two were fatally injured, and several others were painfully burned by a disastrous boiler explosion that occurred at the Henry Clay colliery early today.
The entire steam supplying plant of the mine, consisting of thirty-six boilers, was totally demolished, and in addition to the monetary loss, which will aggregate $30,000, the Henry Clay, Big Mountain, Sterling and Peerless collieries will be unable to resume operations for at least a month.
The explosion is the worst of its kind that has ever occurred in this region, and its cause is a mystery.
The dead and injured are:
The report of the explosion was heard in this city, a distance of more than two miles. The terrible accident came upon the boiler house employees without warning, and only one of them, a Pole, escaped uninjured. The others were buried between the mass of debris and some of the bodies were not recovered for two hours. The boiler on the west end of the house is supposed to have been the first to explode, and then the adjoining boilers went up in quick succession, the repeated explosions resembling the roar of heavy artillery.
Only nine of the thirty-six boilers escaped destruction, and even these were so badly damaged that they are useless. Many of the boilers were torn apart near the center by the terrible force, and the two sections would then take different directions. One-half of a boiler was hurled a full quarter of a mile and lodged in the slush bank northwest of where the boiler house formerly stood. Another that took a similar direction crashed through the side of the breaker and lodged against the scraper line. Another crashed through the tip house and came near killing several employees.
Four collieries will be thrown into idleness by the accident for a month or six weeks, so that the total loss will aggregate $100,000.
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