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Mine Disasters in
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Roane Iron Company
Rockwood Mine Explosion

Rockwood, Tennessee
July 23, 1925
No. Killed - 10



See also:   Rockwood Mine Explosion, Oct. 4, 1926

From the Google News Archives:  External Link
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Tennessee Miners Caught by Gas, Fear None Survive Blast
Helena Independent, Montana
July 24, 1925

Rockwood, Tenn., July 23. -- (By Associated Press) -- Two bodies were brought to the surface at 8 o'clock tonight from the Roane Iron Company's mine, where 10 men were entombed by an explosion of gas this morning.

The bodies were badly mangled and were recognized only by their clothing.  Another rescue party entered the mine.  Hope of finding the other entombed men has been abandoned.

The two bodies were found more than a mile from the entrance to the mine.  Rescue workers said they had been blown 800 feet by the force of the blast.

William J. Snow, superintendent of the Roane Iron Company coal mines and a party of men who went into Bryson Dip on No. 7 entry to combat a mine fire last night were trapped behind an explosion early today.

Bryson Dip is the scene of a fire that broke out some time ago, and was walled up in an attempt to extinguish it.  The barricade was removed this week in the presence of state and federal mine inspectors who pronounced its condition satisfactory, and left the city last night.

At 11 o'clock the old blaze broke out again, and Mr. Snow organized a party to fight the fire.

Later, the superintendent told a miner to make his rounds in other parts of the mine, and as he was returning to the scene of the fire shortly before 2 o'clock, he heard an explosion and smelled an onrush of after-damp gas.  It is said that the miner only managed to escape by leaping into a mule-drawn mine car and out-running the deadly gas cloud, and that when he reached the main slope he was semi-conscious and barely able to speak.

A rescue party, headed by James B. King, went in to try and save the entrapped men.

Excitement in the city is running high.  This is the most serious accident in the district in the 50 years the coal mines have been in operation, it is said.


Rockwood, Tenn., July 24. -- (By the Associated Press) -- Hope of reaching the 8 men entombed in the mine of the Roane Iron Company within the next 48 hours, was dispelled early today as the fourth rescue party to enter the mine was driven back by afterdamp, its danger enhanced by crackling flames further in the mine.

The listing of assumed casualties are:
  • Sam Givens
  • Roy Linbury
  • Tom Green
  • Jim Wilson
  • T. J. Sullivan
  • William J. Snow
  • John Green



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