Hellraisers Journal: Deported Union Miners Dumped at Bleak Alkali Sand Dunes Without Food or Water

(6 pm. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

You ought to be out raising hell. This is the fighting age. Put on your fighting clothes.

-Mother Jones


Sunday June 12, 1904

Cripple Creek District, Colorado – Deported Miners Dumped Near Kansas Border

Cripple Creek Deportations June 1914

The miners who were herded down the street on Friday by militiamen and Citizens’ Alliance “deputies” and then loaded into railroad cars and deported from the Cripple Creek strike zone, were found near the Kansas border yesterday. The following report comes to us from today’s San Francisco Call:




Deported Men Are Taken to the Kansas Line by Troops.


Left on a Bleak Prairie Without Food or Water Supply.


SYRACUSE, Kansas, June 11.-The deported Colorado miners camped at Holly to-night, just across the Colorado line. They were notified to-night that a special train would be sent to take them all to Denver.

HOLLY, Colo., June 11. – With a parting volley of rifle bullets, fired over their heads by the militia and deputies to, warn them to “hike” eastward as fast as their legs could carry them and never again set foot on Colorado soil, ninety-one union miners from the Cripple Creek district were unloaded from a special Santa Fe train on the prairie this morning, one half mile from the Colorado-Kansas State line, and left to shift for themselves. The exiles were disembarked in haste and without ceremony. The guards and deputies were tired out and in ill humor from their long, tedious trip from the Teller County gold camp and were in no mood to extend any special courtesies or kindness to their unfortunate charges.

“Hurry up there, you fellows,” cried Lieutenant Cole, when the train stopped in the midst of the alkali sand dunes that dot the prairie in the vicinity of the eastern part of Powers County near the Kansas line. “We haven’t got any time to waste out here.”


And no time was wasted. The special, which consisted of an engine, a combination baggage car and smoker and two day coaches, had no sooner come to a standstill than the car doors were unlocked and thrown open and the order given by Lieutenant Cole for the exiles to leave the train.

“Step lively, you fellows, step lively,” admonished Deputy Benton, who was in command of the civil forces of the expedition, and in less time than it takes to tell it the three cars were emptied of their passengers and the train was started on its way back to La Junta.

The men were dumped out on the cheerless prairie without food or water, for the soldiers and deputies, in their haste to get home, had forgotten to unload the small stock of commissary supplies the train carried when it left Victor yesterday afternoon.


The exiles were a cheerless lot, indeed. Without even a light and miles from the nearest habitation, they huddled together in groups on either side of’ the Santa Fe track and discussed their plight. Warned to move eastward, on pain of being rearrested  and severely handled, and notified by the Kansas authorities that they would not be allowed to seek refuge in that State, the spirit of the men broke. Many of them walked  back westward on the railroad to Holly, the Salvation Army colony in Colorado, where the charitable inhabitants provided breakfast for them. Some of them later started to walk to Lamar, Colo.

Sheriff Jack Brady and forty deputies of Hamilton County were at the State line to prevent the deported men entering Kansas.




Bell Declares Independence Dynamiters Are In Bullpen.


CRIPPLE CREEK, Colo., June 11.-General Sherman M. Bell to-day made the following statement for publication:

“I have indisputable evidence in my possession which will lead to the conviction of  union men for the murder of non-union miners who were killed in the Independence explosion. We have between thirty-five and forty men in the bullpen who will swing for this crime. We are only waiting to capture three or four men before we tell what our evidence Is.”


The San Francisco Call.

(San Francisco California)

-of June 12, 1904



Miners Being Deported from Cripple Creek District



Friday June 12, 1914

Vancouver, British Colombia – Mother Jones Interviewed by The Daily Province

Mother Jones with Strikers Children

Mother Jones is in Canada at the request of the Nanaimo Coalfield Strikers. She spoke on Wednesday evening at the Vancouver Labor Temple to a cheering crowd, and yesterday granted the following interview to a reporter from the Vancouver  Daily Province:

Although an Octogenarian

Is Still active in the Cause of Labor

The secret of longevity was disclosed by the labor organizer, Mrs. Mary Jones, or “Mother” Jones, as she is more familiarly known, in the course of an interview with a representative of The Province yesterday afternoon on her arrival from Victoria. “Mother ” Jones is a keen-eyed, vigorous, motherly looking old lady, who in spite of her advanced years – she is in her 83rd year – shows few traces of the strenuous labor struggles in which she has been a moving spirit for the past 35 years.

“I attribute my good health and unimpaired facilities,” she said in reply to a query, “to the life of activity which I have led. Many people retire from active life at the age of 50 and spend the rest of their years in peace and quietness. They allow their mental faculties to become dulled by not exercising them, and by not continuing to take an energetic interest in affairs.

“I was nearly fifty when I took up the business of agitating to improve labor conditions. My mind is kept constantly on the alert coping with difficulties, planning campaigns, organizing work along new lines and with striving to better present-day conditions. I have no time to think about getting old; besides I have a lot to accomplish yet.

“The average healthy individual,” she continued, “could live to be a hundred easily if he or she would only follow out my precepts.”

Long and Active Career.

Mrs. Jones is a wonderful woman – that fact is impelled to one’s notice on first meeting her, and is strengthened after a few minutes conversation. She has been engaged in active propaganda and agitation on behalf of the labor unions since the Knights of Labor, the forerunner of the American Federation of Labor, was first organized. She referred to her early endeavors as “sowing the seed.” Her husband was an iron moulder, and when the first move was made towards organizing, the labor forces of the United States, she became associated with the leaders, rapidly assuming the direction of affairs herself.

“The recent troubles in Colorado,” Mrs. Jones declared,”are to be construed as another indication of the division that is in process between the classes and the industrial workers. The capitalists have the government on their side, and the government has the military and military have the bayonets with which to subdue strikers.

Calls Prisons “Bastiles”

She discussed the terms she had served in the military prisons, or “bastiles,” as she preferred to call them, and the many labor fights in which she participated, turning from description of one industrial struggle to another and interpolating a remark here and there, to explain how she had stirred the President and Congress to action, by her appeals and maneuvres.

Mrs. Jones’s principal object in visiting the Pacific coast for the first time was explained. In view of patriotic sentiment, inspired by consecrating a day each year to the memory of those who lost their lives on the field of battle, she said that organized labor had decided to adopt similar measures and on Memorial Day to pay tribute to those who had perished in industrial strife. Between 6,000 and 8,000 labor unionists marched in the first parade in Seattle a week ago last Saturday and 20,000, it is estimated, attended a mass meeting held afterwards.

Mr. George Pettigrew of Nanaimo, member of the international board of the United Mine Workers, accompanied “Mother ” Jones from Victoria. In the course of her chat, she condemned the manner in which the Canadian immigration officer at Seattle had refused her permission to board the boat for Victoria and praised the Victoria inspector for his courteous treatment under similar conditions. She declared that if the Canadian authorities had adhered to their first attitude of barring her from entering the Dominion she would have invoked the aid of the executive heads of the American Government to grant her the courtesies.


The State of Utah vs. Joseph Hillstrom

Joe Hill

Jury selection continues in the trial of Fellow Worker Joe Hill. Meanwhile, Hellraisers has learned that last week FW Hill made an attempt to prove that the gun in his possession on the night that he received medical care for a gunshot wound from Dr. McHugh was not of the same caliber as that used in the murder of Morrison. He attempted to tract down the records of sale for the smaller-caliber Luger pistol which he states was the one he discarded as he was being driven back to Murray by Dr. Bird. On June 2nd the Salt Lake Tribune carried the following report:



Is Conducted to a Pawnshop in Effort to Show Revolver Was of Small Caliber


At his own request Joseph Hillstrom, accused of the murder of J. G. Morrison, was taken from the county jail yesterday to a pawnshop on West South Temple street, where he attempted to prove that he had purchased a revolver prior to the Morrison killing that was of a smaller caliber than the gun from which the fatal shot was fired.

The records at the shop showed that he had purchased a gun there last December 15, about four weeks before the murder of Morrison, but failed to show the caliber of the gun.

Hillstrom was crestfallen at his failure, but he declared he would prove that he had a gun which was of smaller caliber and that he threw it away just before his arrest following a quarrel over a woman.

Hillstrom goes to trial in the district court next Tuesday.  He will contend that the bullet wound from which he was suffering at the time of his arrest was received in an “adventure” involving a woman and not from the gun fired by J. Arlin Morrison, the grocer’s son, before he too was shot down by the highwaymen. He refuses to disclose the name of the woman, declaring that he will go to his death rather than bring her name to light.


Mother Jones Speaks

-ed by Philip S Foner

NY, 1983

The Daily Province

(Vancouver, BC, Canada)

-of June 11,1914

The Case of Joe Hill

-by Philip S. Foner

International Publishers, 1965

Salt Lake Tribune

(Salt Lake City, Utah)

– of June 2, 1914


1). Mother Jones with Strikers Children


2). Joe Hill



Il trovatore – Anvil chorus

Liberty Forever

We broke the yoke of a pitiless class,

And we burst asunder our bonds and chains;

Our organization will win when it strikes,

And no more shall a King or a crown remain

United fast are we with bonds that naught can sever;

Long, loud and clear and far our battle cry rings ever

Liberty for aye and aye!

Liberty forever!

Liberty forever!

Shall be our battle cry.

     -Joe Hill

First appeared in 7th ed. of Little Red Songbook, June 1914