The following activities will be held to mark the 50th anniversary of
the Knox Mine disaster.
January 22, 2009 marks the 50th anniversary of the disaster which
occurred in the Port Griffith section of Jenkins Township. A variety
of events from the 15-22 are scheduled.
We ask for the medias help promoting and covering these events. All
events are free and open to the public.
On that date in 1959 an ice-swollen Susquehanna River broke into the
mine workings of the Knox Coal Company, sections of which were
illegally mined beneath the riverbed. Over 10 billion gallons of water
flowed into deep mines in the Wyoming Valley as a result, devastating
the area's number one industry and closing many mines.
Twelve miners perished in the disaster, their bodies never recovered.
The victims were: Samuel Altieri, John Baloga, Benjamin Boyar, Francis
Burns, Charles Featherman, Joseph Gizinski, Dominic Kaveliskie, Frank
Orlowski, Eugene Ostrowski, William Sinclair, Daniel Stefanides and
Thursday, January 15: Plymouth Public Library, Main St., Plymouth, 7
p.m., former Knox employee Bill Hastie and author Prof. Bob Wolensky
will speak on the Nottingham mine disaster of January 15, 1947. The
lecture is sponsored by the Plymouth Historical Society. Refreshments
will be served.
Friday, January 16: Pittston Area High School, Stout St., Yatesville,
students will view a video presentation with question and answer
sessions. A public commemoration and display for the 50th anniversary
will start at 6 p.m. Sponsored by the Greater Pittston Historical
Saturday, January 17: Anthracite Heritage Museum, McDade Park,
Scranton, 2 p.m., full program commemorating the 50th anniversary of
the Knox Mine Disaster. Sponsored by the Pennsylvania Historical and
Museum Commission. Refreshments will be served.
Sunday, January 18: St. John the Evangelist Roman Catholic Church,
William St., Pittston, 10 a.m., annual memorial mass with a coffee
reception in the parish hall.
Following the reception there will be a wreath laying ceremony at the
disaster memorial, Main Street, Port Griffith. Sponsored by Knox Mine
Disaster Memorial Committee.
At the Exeter Town Hall, 1101 Wyoming Ave., 6 p.m., Bill Hastie and
Prof. Bob Wolensky will speak on the Schooley Shaft disaster of 1947.
Sponsored by the Exeter Historical Society. Refreshments will be
January 19 - 22: Overlook Profession Center (former Pittston
Hospital), Knox display and video presentation available to groups of
eight or more, scheduled by appointment only . Call 654-6209 or
357-9564 for more information. Sponsored by the Greater Pittston
Tuesday, January 20: Wyoming Area Secondary Center: student video
presentation with question and answer sessions; sponsored by the
Greater Pittston Historical Society.
Earth Conservancy Building, Main Street, Ashley, 7 p.m., video
documentary of the Knox Mine Disaster, followed by a group discussion.
Sponsored by the Huber Breaker Preservation Society. Refreshments will
Thursday January 22: 50th anniversary of the disaster. Overlook
Professional Center, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. display and video presentation.
11:20 a.m. candle lighting and blessing ceremony, sponsored by Greater
Pittston Historical Society.