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title: 'Cochise review. (Bisbee, Ariz.) 1900-1901, February 23, 1901, Page 3, Image 3',
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BLOWN TO ATOMS.
Seven Miners Killed by an Explosion
at Ash Peak District in Graham
Duncan, Ariz., Fob. 18. At noon
on Saturday, 1,500 pounds of giant
powder exploded in the mine of the
Commorco Gold and Silver mining
company at Ash Peak.
0 Seven men aro dead as a result of
the fearful blast.
The names of the dead aro: -. .
Godfrov, Wilford Wilson, Joe Alamo,
John 6'Conner, Joe Phillips, and
rt,ni..c.n'Viiil nil sintrlo man. ana J.
T. Caid, who leaves a wife and two
children. , . t.
Two men who were working on the
fifty foot level wore rescued alivo.
Two of the bodies of those killed
wero found yesterday at the bottom of
the 200-foot shaft. Every bono in both
of their bodies was broken, by the aw
ful force of the concussion in the' con
fined space at the bottom of the mine.
The bodies bore the appearance of
having been crushed under a heavy
weight, the blood oozing from mouth
and oars and nose, and the skulls
smashed from being cast up against
the rocky wall of the fearful tomb. '
The man at tho whim at the surface
was blown fifty feet into the air, and
The other four aro supposed to have
been at or near the magazine, going
for powder, or returning with mater
ial for blasts. What caused the explo
sion will never be known. There was
not enough of tho bodies of these four
unfortunate mon picked up to make
one whole man.
These four were literally blown in
to atoms. Only bits of their vbodies
were found, last night by tho search
ing party, and shreds of burnt cloth
ing, buttons, or other trilling thing by
which to identify them.
The machinery and timbers from
tVio curfnp.n nlnnt wore scattered all
arouud the mine, a distance in somo ,
cases oi mm u tunc. a. no uuo "v
explosion was hoard 20 miles away.
Eight men were in the mine at the
time of the disaster, and one was work
ing the whim at the top. The men
wero working in groups of two in dif
ferent parts oi tne mine. xuBiuugu,
zino in tho mine contained 1,500 pounds
of giant ppwer. When it went off, tho
whole mine was set on fire, and it was
with the greatest uimcuioy tnai mo
burning timbers could be reached and
tho fire controlled.
Special correspondence to the Review;
Solomonville, Ariz., leD. iu. un
Saturday February lflth, near Ash i
Springs, 30 miles east of Solomonville, '
on the Duncan road, occurred the most
terrible mining-disaster that has ever
happened in the territory.
Tho following particulars were
gleaned on Sunday by the writer who
visited tho scene of tho explosion in
company Avith a relative of one of tho
victims of the accident. At about 11:30
a. m. while the miners in the Com
merce mine were preparing their noon
blasts, in some manner unknowo, the
magazine which was on tho 50 foot levi 1
was exploded, hurling into eternity in
the.twinkllng of an eye, the following
Joe Philips, of Duncan.
Wilford Wilson, of SalTord.
Clay Godfrey, of SalTord.
Thomas J. Caid. of Duncan.
Charlie O'Neil, of Ft. Thomas.
Joo Alimo, of Duncan.
John O'Connoll of Salem, Massachu
setts, who was an owner in the. mine;
also badly injuring Wm. Phillips of
Duncan and slightly injuring Mr.
Bratton and son, Ed. and Mr. Godfrey.
In a few moments all of the nnin
jured in camp rushed to the entrance
of the mine which was situated about
200 yards over tho top of tho hill from
tho residence portion of tho camp and
what they beheld must have chilled
the bravest heart; huge columns of
smoko was issuing from the shaft and
they thought at first that everything
was on fire. Everything around the
mouth of the shaft was destroyed, tho
wnim and steel cable were torn and
badly broken, while therails.of the oro
track wero twisted and torn out of tho
track bed and thrown in every direc
tion . , .,
Mr. Bratton was sorting oro on tho
dump and probably was blown off the
dump in advance of somo of tho Hying
timbors and was not badly hurt.
John O'Connoll, tho oldest man
killed, was attending to tho whim aud
was blown clear over the dump into the
canon and was badly bruised and
burned, died immediately. As the boll
had just beoir rung as a signal to hoist
lie was probably very close to the
mouth of tho shaft when tho blast
In a vory short timo brave men pro
pared to enter tho mino and had to uso
ropes as tho entire lumber casing of
tho shaft was blown out.
Pretty soon Ed. Bratton and Wm.
Phillipps wore gotten out, tho latter
being badly injured aud the forme)- on
ly slightly; also tho body of Charllo
O'Neil was recovered and who proba
bly was less disfigured than any of tho
otliors. ., , ,,
Tho remains of Wilson and Godfrey
of SalTord, and of O'Connoll, who was
at the top of tho snaft, wore all easily
identified. Only portions of tho other
bodies wero found and it was presumed
that two of tho men wero torn almost
into strings. About 4 p. m. Sunday,
nK ,7lV,K"ft ,tf0W F. Sked-
v.rowen, w . ,-- -;,- w
nlors, W. A. Bowles. A. P. Angle, W.
F. Willis, W. L. Cathern, R. L. Chand
ler, S. W. Gooch, S. W. Massoy.
I did not get tho evidence before tho
Justlco of tno reaeo av.iu u. u.
jury, but tho substance of the verdict
was that no porson was held to bo re
sponsible for the accident and the ver
dict was unanimous, as it was returned
In a very short time.
The following men who were killed
wero unmarried: Pillipps, Wilson, God
frey, O'Neil and Alimo; the others
wero married. Caid leaves a wife and
three or four young children in desti
tute circumstances, and O'Connell has
a family in Massachusetts.
Tho remains of the SalTord boys
were brought homo and interred at
SalTord, and O'Neil's remains were
taken to his home at Thomas. Tho re
mains of the other parties were buried
at the mine.
Prof. Towraey, superintendent of the
mine, was at Tucson when the acci
dent occurred and Mr. W. A. Bowles,
who was in charge immediately dis
patched a messenger to Duncan, who
informed all who could be reacded by
wire of the situation.
Mr. Towmoy immediately sent a tele
gram, authorizing Mr. Bowles to spare
no expense in caring for the dead or
for relief of the wounded, and ho ar
rived Sunday evening at 10 o'clock.
Statements of different parties differ
widely in regard to the amount of
giant powder which exploded, some
claiming that there was over 3,000
pounds stored on the 50 foot level in
tho magazine, while others ray there
were only about 700 pounds. The com
panies books, however, will show prob
ably the exact amount. There was al
so somo powder and somo blasts that
were not exploded on the 100 foot level.
The true cause of the explosion will
never be known, but there are several
theories which seem reasonable. One
is that the boys were getting powder
from the magazine and had dropped a
cap or sot tho cap off with the end of a
fuse or that they dropped a candle or
cap on the floor. The two men, Phillips
and Bratton, who were alivo in the
mine after tho explosion know very
little in regard to it as they were quite
a distance from the magazine. I be
lieve one of them said that Joo Phillips
and Alimo wero at the magazine.
The mine had tvvoopenings about 100
feet apart, and the blast came out of
both holes,completely destroying every
thing in the shafts and around the
None of the frame buildings wero
seriously injured, being protected by a
granite wall over the entrance to the
mino, which threw the explosive force
in the opposite direction. Had the
wall not been there the buildings and
all in them would no doubt have been
The whole surface of the valley west
of the mine is literally covered with
broken tools, lumber, steel drills,
pieces of everything movable that was
on the dump,' and I noticed pieces of
heavy timbers, 12 inches square, at a
distance of 300 or 400 yards from the
A small frame building used as a
blacksmith shop stood not over twenty
feet from the main entrance and was
not injured to any extent, neither was
Mr. Godfrey, who was working in the
A steel cable, three-quarter inch,
was blown out of the mine and part of
it was unraveled like a rope.
A dray horse was blown from the
dump "quit the flat" until Sunday1
afternoon, when he came in to get wa-
ter. The hair on his left side is badly
siuged and he had several slight
scraicnes, dud was reauy lor ma supper i
at feeding time. i
Too much praise cannot bo given to .
the brave miners who worked unceas-1
ingly till Sunday night to clear the
mine and rescue the unfortunate men
who were inside. They wero worn out
and almost dead from tho experience, i
but no complaint was heard. One of i
them remarked that in tvventy-seven '
years of a miner's experience he never ;
went through such a terrible disaster.
I have seen sad sights and bad acci-1
dents before, but never anything to !
correspond with this, and for that rea
son will not try to describe the anguish
of tho suffering relatives.
Charles O'Neil, the young man from
Thomas, is a son of J. H. O Neil and
hasiesided in Graham county almost
all his life time of about 22 years. He
was sober, industrious, had no bad hab-1
its, was a favorite where he was known
and had been working for the company
for several months. It A'as at his own I
' request that ho had bGen transferred
to tho day shift the day before he was
i Wilson and Clay Godfrey wero both
highly esteemed I5y a largo circle of
acquaintances aeid lolativos.
, U is not only tho duty, but It should
be a pleasuie, for every man in Gra
ham county, who can afford to, to go
down Into his pocket and give to Mrs.
Caid and hor little children something
to live on and to help them in this bad
hour in a substantial way, and there
(may be others who need help, and if
i they do should also bo assisted.
I Many of the good people of Duncan
1 camo out to ronder all tho assistance
l possible, and doubtless tho peoplo from
1 all over tho valloy would have gono had
I the distance not boon so great. ' '
I It is not known what the intention '
1 of tho superintendent or company will '
; be in regard to tho mine, but as tho
property loss la heavy it may be somo
little timo before the mino will resume
operations, as tho shafting will no
doubt havo to all bo replaced and a
i new hoist ordered.
! Notice to the Public.
I I hereby give notice to tho public not
' to rent either houses or cabins built on
! tho Quartzlto Strip mining claim from
C. A. Overlook, or on tho Mountain
View claim from Patrick McNillis, and
I others ns I am tho solo ownor of both
claims. Itis timo that law and order
should bo respected in Blsbee.
(Signed) Maktin O'Hare.
Disgrace to the Town.
The attention of the board of super
visors is called to the condition of the
jail in BLsbee, which is a disgrace to
the town and nothing more than a foul
smelling diseased hole which a dog
would refuse to remain in. Poorly
ventilated, with ill-smelling slop buck
ets, dirty floors covered with old quilts
reeking with vermin and disease germs,
the spectacle it presents is enough to
attract the attention of any passer by.
A Review reporter visited the jail
this week and found the conditions as
described above. Two small rooms an
swer the purpose of a jail in Blsbee.
They are nothing mose than hulls, and
a dangerous prisoner would have no
trouble in making his escape. Often
times it is necessary to place women in
durance vile, and they are placed in
this filthy place together with the men.
It is a place that breeds disease and re
quires the special attention of the
board of supervisors at their next session.
mm cu X
? Fresh Fruits, of all kinds ro- 5
? nnlvnrl rlnllv. Winpa. Tiirmnrs. T
and Cigars, Goods delivered free
Medigovich & Nobile
I. W. Wallace :
AdENT AND BROKER
Bisbee - Arizona
Represen tin Mining Prop
erties. Real Estate Bought and Sold.
Money Loaned and Invested.
Giaconovich & Co.
Wines, Liquors and Cigars.
Fruits and Confections.
Kitchen . . .
Open Day and Night.
Short Orders a Specialty
Meals served to families
, . c.
, ' ain SLreeL
Whitehead & Marchell, Proprietors.
OKO. C. CLARK, E. M.
C. W. MITCHELL
j Examinations and reports made on
minine properties. Desi&ns furnished
for ad kinds of mining and milling
Assays made in DupIL
1 cate, 60 c$nts a metal.
Qualitative and quantitative analyses
made of any mineral substances.
Surveys of Patents In
Arizona and Mexico.
CONTRACTOR AND BUILDER
OFFICE: J. H. JACK LUMBER COMPANY
Oaggagc and Express
Handled With Care.
Louvo orders with S. K. Williams. Tel. No
Olio mile below iowii In the Cool
Cotton woods. Cull onoe und you
will ulwnyBPome ncain.
BISBEE CASH FRDIT STORE
Ice Cream and Soda Water
Sweet Cream, Confections, etc. Ice
Geo. Dorflinger, Prop.
M. Diamond & Bro.
Main Street Formerly the Can Can Restaurant.
YE take great PRIDE in extending an invitation
to the public in general to call and inspect
our FINE line of
Mens' Readytowear Clothing
And why should'nt we feel a sense of pleasure? Can
any one in town show a better line at such low
prices? Here are a few offerings
$22.50 SUITS Only $12.50
$17.50 SUITS Only $12.50
$12.50 SUITS Only $9.00
.We carry a complete line of Mens' Furnishings at the
VERY LOWEST PRICES.
Formerly the Can-Can Restaurant
J. B. ANGIUS & GO.
Main St. Bisbee, Arizona,
THE BISBEE f
Boot and Shoe Store
Dry Goods and Gents' Furnishings.
Just received a fine line of gents' suits,
and up-to-date Stetson hats.
PHOENIX Beef, Veal, Mutton,
Lamb and Sausage a specialty.
BREWERY AVENUE, BISBEE
: 1 M Mv
& q&qQ,'&&&&& 'S''& !qS$. '2S
U. S. COURT COnniSIONER,
NOTARY PUBLIC. CONYEYANCER g
I S, K, WILLIAMS I
1 JUSTICE OF THE PEACE
S Stenographer and Tj plst ahviij s nt hand
aud dictations talsen at hotel or
icsidonco if desired Charges renso-
J) able and services prompt nml
Dubache Building gf ttK.
I Bisbee Transfer & Express
S orivOA.iJV m
J TO ALL PARTS OF TOWN
DAY OR NIQHT
E. B. MASON,
5 RKRFF DFAI
5 Rents Collected. Proporty
DRY QOODS, CLOTHING g
HATS AND SHOES. 5j
L J. 0VERL0CK
Bread, Pies and
on hand or to
Money Loaned. Rents Col
lected on Commission. Goueral
Real Estate Busidoss Transacted.
Houses for Kent. Income
Property for Sale. Property of
all kinds handled on commission
-e WQAfex" &&&&&&&&&&$' g
FSTATF MMPANV S
Looked After Money Loaned. .