Eckley Miners’ Village near Weatherly,
One of the persistent problems in patch towns such as Eckley was the relentless conflict between miners of different ethnicities. Miners from different parts of Europe lived in separate parts of town and labored in separate work gangs. This ethnic antagonism was a major barrier to union organizers such as John Mitchell, first president of the United Mine Workers of America. Mitchell frequently told the miners, "The coal you mine is not Slavic coal. It's not Irish coal. It's not Polish coal. It's not Italian coal. It's coal." Until the miners learned that lesson, nothing would change. After half a century of failed efforts to organize mine workers in a united job action, John Mitchell led a successful strike against the mine owners in 1900.
For more information about Eckley Miners' Village and to take a virtual tour of Eckley, click here.
For additional information on the history of coal mining and labor organization in Pennsylvania check these links: