Wayne's World of History and Genealogy

Home | About | Contact | Facebook logo
seperator decorative top bar

Coal & Coal Mining
History & Genealogy

seperator decorative bottom bar
West Viginia Coal Miners Wars of the 1920s
Blair Mountain
Indictment and Trials of C. Frank Keeney, Fred Mooney, & William Blizzard
Mooney & Keeney
Fred Mooney & C. Frank Keeney

The Cairo Bulletin, Cairo, Illinois
Volume 52, Number 221
Thursday Morning, July 29, 1920, Page 6
- - - - -
In West Virginia Field Issue Is Recognition of Union and Not Wages
- - - - -
      Williamson, Va., July 28. -- The campaign of the United Mine Workers to organize the 5,000 miners in the Mingo county bituminous coal field has precipitated a situation which, each side declares can only end when it has won a complete victory. In the conflicts growing out of this move 12 or more persons have lost their lives. Wages, apparently, form a secondary consideration, the battle being waged around recognition of the union and the right of mine owners to employ detectives in and around the mines.
      "The men and the operators could get together and settle this thing were it not for the question of the mine guards, said Charles F. Keeney, president of District No. 17, United Mine Workers, who is in command of the union forces. "But in their present temper these men are not to be fooled with. Right now this situation is a powder mill."
      "There is not a mineguard in Mingo county and there has not been for years," said George Bausewine, secretary of the Coal Operators' association of Williamson. "Private detectives are employed as other corporations employ detectives for intelligence work in and around their properties. they are not used for guarding the mines."
      The question of wages hinges on the scale paid in Kanawha field, that adoption of this scale would increase the earnings of miners in Mingo, while the operators insist that their miners, under the scale now in force, are being paid more than it is possible for the Kanawha miners to earn. However, little attention is being paid to that phase of the controversy. Recognition of the union is the big issue.
      Early in the year the movement to organize the United Mine Workers was inaugurated by President Keeney from district headquarters at Charleston, and organizers were sent into Mingo county. They met with such success that a demand was made upon the operators for the enforcement of th Kanawha scale and recognition of the union. This demand the operators refused, and the union called a strike. The order, mine operators say, was answered by from 1,500 to 1,800 miners, but the union officials put the figure higher.
      The companies, through their lawyers, took the position that the houses built for the miners who had gone on strike reverted at once to the owners.
      The miners, in some instances, held that If the companies wanted the house of a man they must obtain possession of it by due process of law.
      Numbers of miners were evicted from company houses, and it was for that purpose private detectives "mine guards" the miners term them, were sent to Matawan, June 19, wand where in the fight which followed the eviction of five families 10 persons were killed.
      Many miners, however, moved from company houses without protest and the United Mine Workers established for such persons tent colonies along Tug river near the places of their former employment. there the strikers and their families live in army tents, and there they declare they will stay until the strike has been settled and they have returned to work.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
The Daily Illini, Champaign-Urbana, Illinois
Volume 50 Number 5
Saturday Morning, September 5, 1920, Page 1
      CHARLESTON, W. VA., Sept. 25 -- A general strike involving 120,000 organized workers of W. ,Va. will be called "if federal troops are to be used as strike breaking agencies instead of for protection of the constitutional rights of citizens," said C F. Keeney.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
The DeKalb Daily Chronicle, Dekalb, Illinois
Volume 21, Number 253
Saturday, September 25, 1920, Page 1
      Charleston, W. Va., Sept 25 -- W. J. Cornwell, of West Virginia, today replied to miners strike threats with open defiance.
      Following a conference of mine workers C. F. Keeney, state president, threatened to call a strike of 125,000 miners in the state unless federal troops were removed.
      Cornwell issued a statement saying he had intended to ask for a recall of troops sent to Harlan County, to quell the district but now would ask that they remain in view of the threatened strike.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -

The Monmouth Daily Atlas, Monmouth, Illinois
Saturday, August 27, 1921, Page 1
- - - - -
President Will Give Careful Consideration To Request of Lewis.
-- Fighting Last Night
- - - - -
      Washington, Aug. 27. -- President Harding is giving careful consideration to the request of John L. Lewis, President of the United Mine Workers of America, for a conference of mine operators and workers to end the industrial situation and threatened war in Mingo and Logan counties, West Virginia, it was stated at the White House today.
      The President discussed the situation with Senator Sutherland, West Virginia, and it is understood the feasibility of calling a conference was considered.
- - - - -
Uncertain About Movement
      Charleston, W. Va., Aug. 27 -- General H. H. Bandholz, war department representative, was uncertain today whether marching miners en route to Mingo county had halted their advances or were approaching a battle with Logan county "defenders".
      He announced reports were conflicting.
      Brandholz had arranged for a conference with C. F. Keeney, district president, when he returns from Madison, W. Va., where he urged the marchers to turn back. Immediately afterward Bandholz will start for Madison.
      One advice received by Bandholz and Gov. E. F. Morgan, said that Don Chafin. Logan county sheriff and leader of the resisting force there, was in a precarious position on a hill being attacked.
Back in Positions
      Logan, W. Va., Aug. 27, -- Posses of rifle men were back in their positions in vantage points in nearby hills guarding against a possible ruse of miners who have been marching to Mingo county.
      The volunteer army was called to duty again at midnight after Logan had spent the early hours celebrating peace prospects as a result of the appeal made to marchers by Union officials at Madison late yesterday.
      Shooting on Blair mountain caused sirens to be sounded and other alarms spread, but the Logan forces encountered no opposition when they reached Blair mountain
      Sheriff Don Chafin received reports that more than 1,000 miners had refused to turn back following the appeal from officers and that they were proceeding to the Logan county line. He ordered the posses to prepare for any emergency and to continue on duty.
      Following reports from Madison last night, Chafin disbanded his mountaineer army. Most of them had just settled into their first real sleep in forty-eight hours when they were again called to duty by screeching sirens.
      Within twenty-five minutes, fifty automobile loads of armed men were dashing through the darkness to the county line ready to resist "invasion". Shortly after a special train was commandeered to rush up reserves and stores of ammunition and food.
      The civilians found no opposition when they reached their strongholds. They were unable to learn who had been responsible for the shooting that caused the alarm.
- - - - -
To Make Trip
      Charleston, W. Va., Aug. 27. -- General H. H. Bandholz and his aides, representing the war department, left here early today for Bone county where thousands of miners who were marching on Mingo county coal fields were encamped.
      The purpose of the trip, General Bandholz said was to make certain the miners have abandoned their march and will return to their homes. Until this was definitely ascertained, Federal troops would remain in readiness.
      Today was expected to witness the disintegrigation of the miners' army.
      C. F. Keeney, President of the United Mine Workers District 17, made a personal appeal to the marching men at Madison to halt. The advance guard had reached Madison and passed the night there, the remainder being scattered through the hills.
      Special trains to take the men away arrived at Madison early today
- - - - -
Will Not Send Troops
      Washington. Aug. 27. -- President Harding will not order Federal troops to West Virginia unless there is no other course open to relieve the situation growing out of the gathering of armed miners between Charleston and Mingo and Logan counties, it was said at the executive offices today.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -

The Macomb Daily By-Stander, Macomb, Illinois
Volume 17, Number 211
Saturday, August 27, 1921, Page 1
- - - - -
- - - - -
- - - - -
Asks Officers in Nearby County to Re-inforce his Deputies
-- Illinois and Ohio Miners Are There
- - - - -
      Welch, W. Vir., Aug. 27. -- Sheriff W. E. Hatfield of McDowell county today received word from Sheriff Don Chafin that the advance of armed men on Logan county had been renewed. The Logan county sheriff requested that men be rushed to his assistance and Sheriff Hatfield with deputies left here in automobiles at once.
- - - - -
(By Associated Press)
      Charleston, W. Va., Aug. 27. -- Charles F. Keeney, United Mine Worker leader, and the vanguard of miners marching from Marmet to Mingo county, which Keeney turned back at Madison, Boone county, yesterday under orders of Brigadier General Bandholtz, U. S. A., arrived in Charleston shortly before 8 o'clock this morning. At the same time General Bandholtz was starting from Charleston to go over the line of march and see that the "army" had actually disbanded and was going home.
      The miners had left Madison by special train and it was expected they would lose no time in returning to the mining towns and villages from which they had set out more than a week ago.
      In spite of the fact the march was halted at Madison yesterday afternoon and that Mr. Keeney said the miners would listen, to his advice and abandon the enterprise, disquieting rumors began reaching Charleston at an early hour and increased as the day advanced.
      One report which reached United Mine Workers headquarters here was that a large number of armed miners were on their way from the Winding Gulf coal country in Raleigh county to join the miners. No word had reached them that, the march had been abandoned.
      During last night two men carrying cards of the local union at Grandville, Vermillion county, Illinois, appeared at district headquarters, persons in the office stated. They said they were the "advance guard" of seven hundred miners on their way to join the men at Marmet and that twenty-five men from their local had come with them.
      Police reports early today were that railroad men of South Charleston had declared that three hundred men, mostly armed, had come on a freight train from the west shortly after midnight. They were said to have told yardmen that they were miners from Illinois and Ohio, going to Marmet.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
The Macomb Daily By-Stander, Macomb, Illinois
Volume 17, Number 211
Saturday, August 27, 1921, Page 2
- - - - -
- - - - -
- - - - -
Secretary of War Feels Situation Must Be More Serious Before Federal Troops Are Ordered Out.
- - - - -
(By Associated Press)
      Charleston, W. Vir., Aug. 26. -- Frank Keeney district president of the United Mine Workers, and Secretary Alfred Mooney left here in a motor car early today for the camp of the marching miners in Boone county with the announced intention of advising the army to abandon its marching into Mingo county without delay.
      This step was taken after Mooney and Keeney had conferred with Brigadier General Bandholtz, U. S. A., who arrived this morning to investigate the situation in order to report to the war department.
      Madison, W. Vir., Aug. 26. -- The advance guard of the marching miners on their way from Marmet to Mingo as a protest against Governor Morgan's institution of martial law, was turned back by Charles F. Keeney, district president of the United Miners shortly after noon today.
      The advance guard, who are marching ahead of the larger column, arrived here about noon. They pitched tents in a hollow near the business center and awaited the coming of the remainder of the force which, it was said, was strung along the road between here and paytona where the main body of the army had stopped for dinner.
      Chillicothe, Ohio, Aug. 26. -- Regular army troops numbering between 500 and 600, including 150 who arrived this morning from Columbus barracks, were held in readiness shortly before noon today to leave Camp Sherman for West Virginia coal fields. Coaches were in readiness for entrainment for the men who are under full field equipment.
      Washington, Aug. 26. -- Acting Secretary of War Wainwright after receipt of a report today from Brigadier General Bandholtz, said the war department would await further use of federal troops in the coal fields.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
The Macomb Daily By-Stander, Macomb, Illinois
Volume 17, Number 212
Tuesday, August 30, 1921, Pages 1 & 8
- - - - -
- - - - -
- - - - -
United Mine Workers' Board Member Compares Condition With Belgium in Early Part of War.
- - - - -
(By Associated Press)
      Logan, West Vir., Aug. 30. -- More than a thousand men, made up of two companies of the state police, a host of deputy sheriffs, and the remainder armed volunteer citizens from all over Logan county, were ready, their leaders said today, for an eventuality growing out of the fight last Sunday morning between state troopers and a band of armed men on the east slope of Spruce Fork Ridge, east of here.
      Charleston, W. Va., Aug. 30. -- Adjutant General Charnock is back in the capitol after a trip through the disturbed mining district, Sunday night and yesterday. The report he made of the situation was so alarming that Governor Morgan sent an appeal to President Harding for immediate aid.
      In his recent request addressed to the chief executive and secretary of war, Weeks, the governor quoted the adjutant general as reporting that during the trip he commanded armed bands to disperse but they refused to do so and continued to maintain patrols on the road along the boundary line between the two counties. Chesapeake and Ohio railroad trains have been commandeered to transport contingents to armed camps and telephone wires have been cut, and steps were taken to prevent reestablishment of communications, the governor said.
      Adjutant General Charnock's companion, Arthur C. Porter, United Mine Workers board members, returned to Charleston with the state official. He too gave a gloomy account of conditions. His report to C. S. Keeney president of district 17, United Mine Workers of America, follows:
      With all males from the age of 14 to 60 under arms, women and children fleeing in panic over the lines into Boone county, armed patrols arriving and departing, and every available conveyance carrying supplies to the picket posts in the hills, the Sharples-Blair sector may well be compared with Belgium in the early days of the world war.
      "On the north side of the mountain which serves as a water shed to both Coal and Cuyandotte rivers, lie the camps and main force of the miners. Similarily situated on the south side are the Logan county deputies the state police. The miners have advanced picket lines in the hills.
      "Should these men clash it would draw into battle a total of 2,500 men. Along the tops of the ridges are trenches of breast works and felled trees."
      After the battle Sunday night, in which four men were killed, Mr. Porter said, all the miners in the vicinity armed themselves and small boys stood with arms at their fathers' side. Patrols that had been withdrawn from the mountains lying toward Logan county, were again thrown out. Later a party of men hunting near Hewitt heard firing and began a search. At a nearby farm house, one of the men told Mr. Porter, he said, they found Magistrate Fulton Mitchell and four others eating dinner with two machine guns, several rifles and pistols and a large supply of ammunition alongside them. The men told Porter, he added, that Magistrate Mitchell and three of his companions, one his brother and the other John Browning and Will White, were shackled with their own handcuffs by the men who discovered them and that they are now held prisoners, being shifted from place to place to prevent their release by deputies.
      Mr. Porter stated that the men said, messages had been sent across the mountains to peace officers, that the four will not be surrendered but would be exchanged for captive miners at the rate of one captive deputy for 10 miners.
      A statement issued by the Logan coal operators association at Logan, described the situation as "not merely a union movement but an insurrection," and added, "it is a revolution and must be dealt with as such."
      The operators charge union mining officials with being responsible.
      Miners officials on the other hand steadfastly aver they are doing all in their power to maintain order and cite Mr. Keeney's efforts last week, and his letter to Logan miners admonishing them to abstain from violence.
      Washington, Aug. 30. -- The reception of Governor Morgan's second request for federal troops for service in West Virginia to suppress alleged lawlessness on the part of armed bands, was followed within an hour by a delegation sent by the governor to support his request. The delegation was headed by Senator Sutherland, Former Governor McCorkle and Secretary of State Young and included F. N. Staunton, Chas. W. Swisher and John L. Dickinson, of Charleston, bankers and business men. They were received by Secretary Weeks, assistant Wainwright and Major General Harboard, deputy chief of staff, who were in conference on the West Virginia situation, when the visitors arrived. The West Virginia delegation, accompanied by Secretary Weeks, later called at the White House and went into conference with President Harding.
      Members of the delegation said they had informed the secretary and would tell the president that order could not be restored without federal assistance.
      Federal action may be taken in the West Virginia mining situation before tonight, it was indicated today at the White House. The nature of the possible action was not revealed, though it was said, President Harding and responsible officials of the war department were awaiting reports from an investigation, already under way.
Troops To Scene
      Welch. W. Va., Aug. 30. -- Nine hundred members of McDowell post No. 6, American Legion, under the command of W. E. BuBank, answering a call to Governor Morgan, left Welch today at noon in automobiles for Logan county. The message received here from Sheriff Hatfield, who is in Logan county, stated that tension was high and trouble was expected momentarily.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
The Cairo Bulletin, Cairo, Illinois
Volume 253, Number 253
Tuesday Morning, August 30, 1921, Page 1
- - - - -
- - - - -
Armed Men Reassembling on Paint Creek and Other Places Reports State
- - - - -
- - - - -
Federal Troops Will Not Be Sent to Coal Fields Unless Further Request Is Made
- - - - -
      Williamson, W. Va., Aug. 29, (By A. P.) -- Indictments charging murder were returned today by a special grand Jury against O. F. Keeney, president, and Fred Mooney, secretary of District 17, United Mine Workers of America and David Robb, International organizer for the Mine Workers' union.
      Keeney and Mooney are charged with having killed two men last night and Robb's indictment is for the killing of a state trooper.
- - - - -
      Charleston, W. Va., Aug. 29, (By A. P.) -- Armed men from the Paint Creek and Cabin coal fields are reassembling along Lens creek in large numbers, according to reports received here late tonight. While almost 100 officers and men of the state police and 250 deputy sheriffs kept watch on the mountain ridges near the Logan-Boone county border, efforts were still being made to ascertain the number of casualties suffered by a party of armed men at Peach creek Sunday.
      From Logan came news that four men had been killed and a dozen wounded.
      Indianapolis, Ind., Aug. 29, (By A. P.) John L. Lewis, president of the United Mine Workers of America today issued a. statement declaring that he was "more than willing" to join Gov. Morgan in any sincere attempt he may make to prevent civil war in West Virginia and to lend aid to the constituted authorities in recurring respect for the state and federal laws.
      Washington Aug. 29, (By A. P.) Federal troops will not be sent to West Virginia to deal with the situation in the coal fields there unless another request is made by the state authorities, Secretary Weeks announced today after a conference with the president.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
The Cairo Bulletin, Cairo, Illinois
Volume 253, Number 253
Tuesday Morning, August 30, 1921, Page 1
- - - - -
- - - - -
Armed Men Reassembling on Paint Creek and Other Places Reports State
- - - - -
- - - - -
Federal Troops Will Not Be Sent to Coal Fields Unless Further Request Is Made
- - - - -
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
The Monmouth Daily Atlas, Monmouth, Illinois
Monday, September 19, 1921, Page 1
Indicted Officers Of Mine District Appeared Today
- - - - -
      Williamson, W. Va.. Sent. 19. -- Frank Keeney and Fred Mooney, president and secretary of District 17, United Mine Workers of America, indicted here for murder, arrived at Williamson early today.
      They were in custody of Colonel Jackson Arnold, superintendent of state police, and one constable.
      Following a conference between Harold Houston, Miners' attorney, and county authorities, Keeney and Mooney were taken to jail pending hearing on bail. The minimum bond for murder in West Virginia is $10,000.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -

C. Frank Keeney Charles Francis "Frank" Keeney Jr.
Born on March 15, 1882 in Cabin Creek, West Virginia
Died on May 22, 1970
President of District 17 of the United Mine Workers of America
Elected President of the West Virginia Federation of labor in 1922.
A dispute with John L. Lewis in 1924 forced Mr. Keeney and Mr. Mooney to resign.
Most of Mr. Keeney's time during the years 1926 to 1929 much of his time was in Illinois, and he also editd a newspaper - The Coal Miner
On March 16, 1931, Mr. Keeney formed the West Virginia Mine Workers which lasted until 1933.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
Fred Mooney Fred Mooney
Born on January 23, 1888 on Davis Creek, Kanawha County, West Virginia
Died on February 24, 1952
Began work in the local mines at 13 years of age as a trapper boy.
Still was able to attend school until 18 years of age.
Secretary-Treasurer of District 17 of the United Mine Workers of America from 1917 to 1924
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
William Blizzard William H. "Bill" Blizzard
Born on September 19, 1892, Kanawha County, West Virginia
Died on July 31, 1958, Charleston, West Virginia
President of Sub-district 2 of District 17 of the United Mine Workers of America
President of District 17 of the United Mine Workers of America
Vice-President of the West Virginia Federation of Labor
William Bliizzard Roadside Plaque
Photograph courtesy of R. Dale Hawkins
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
Don Chafin Don Chafin
Born on June 26, 1887 in Kermit, West Virginia
Died on August 9, 1954 in Huntington, West Virginia
Sheriff of Logan County, West Virginia 1912 to 1924
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -

Coal Age, Volume 21 Number 2, January 12, 1922
McGraw-Hill Company, Inc.; New York
Keeney, Mooney and Blizzard Imprisoned
      Bail was denied to C. Frank Keeney, president of District 17, United Mine Workers of America; to Fred Mooney, district secretary-treasurer, and to William Blizzard, president of a sub-district, when arraigned in the Circuit Court of Logan County, West Virginia, on Dec. 28, and the three officials of the miners' union were remanded to jail for the time being.
      They had surrendered themselves to Don Chafin, Sheriff of Logan County, at Huntington on the day following Christmas, with the understanding that they were to be given full protection, the Logan Sheriff making that guanantee. It was through the instrumentality of the Logan Sheriff that they were permitted to enjoy Christmas with their families, notwithstanding the fact that capiases from Logan County Were pending against them.
      Keeney, Mooney and Blizzard were arraigned before Judge Bland charged with conspiracy by the Logan County Grand Jury, such charges growing out of the armed march of last August and September. The three defendants face the same charge in Kanawha County. Harold W. Houston, counsel for United Mine Workers, of Charleston, will institute proceedings to have them liberated under a writ of habeas corpus.
      Although Keeney professed ignorance of the plans of the uprising, when arraigned before Judge Bland, the prosecuting attorney of Logan County cited a speech Keeney made at Fairmont prior to the uprising in which the union official specifically spoke of the large number of men under arms in Kanawha County.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
Coal Age, Volume 21 Number 3, January 19, 1922
McGraw-Hill Company, Inc.; New York
Amid Tumult Mingo County
Mines Work Steadily
      Early in the year the coal mines of Mingo County, West Virginia, were being operated by non-union men, peace being maintained more or less success fully by the military forces. The strike, which had commenced in May of the previous year, was still being supported by the union, which to date has never wavered in its determination to pour in money till it wins its contest. On April 5, after the withdrawal of the military forces and at the conclusion of the Matewan trial, violence broke out, a fusillade being opened on Merrimac. On May 12 and a few following days drumfire became quite generally prevalent in the Mingo region.
      In July Keeney addressed a proposal to Governor Morgan in which he sought to have the strike ended by requiring the operators to accede to the re-employment of all strikers without discrimination, an eight-hour day, semi-monthly pay, check weighmen, payment by the ton, a wage adjusted by a board of five representing operators and men, with a board of three to decide should a settlement not be reached, the board to have a representative of the operators, one of the men, and a third, a non-resident of the state, selected by the other two. The offer was not accepted.
      Toward the end of July the Senate sub-committee of the Committee on Education and Labor held hearings regarding the strike. Other hearings were held after the Marmet insurrection to ward the end of October. David Robb, international financial agent for the United Mine Workers in the Mingo district, was ordered by the authorities to leave the state. Two international organizers also were told to leave, but none of the three left, and on July 8 they were arrested with nine others for having unlawfully assembled in contravention of the orders issued under martial law.
      On Aug. 20 miners began to assemble at Marmet to march on Mingo County and drive out the men who were mining coal. By Aug. 25 there were from4,000 to 6,000 armed men assembled, and the march was started. The immediate goal was Williamson, which lies 80 miles by the road from Marmet. The men passed through Boone County and were halted only when Logan County was reached. The federal government, when appealed to, waited to investigate, and Brigadier General Bandholz, who was sent to look the ground over, called into conference C. F. Keeney and Fred Mooney, president and vice-president, respectively, of the district, and told them that they would be held responsible for the march if martial law was declared. They then induced many of the marchers to return home. On Aug. 30 President Harding issued a proclamation ordering the marchers to disperse. The fighting became more severe than ever, but at midnight of Sept. 1 General Bandholz sent for troops, and on their arrival the men surrendered and were sent back to their homes.
      A Logan County jury indicted 1,217 men, charging them with murder, and Keeney and Mooney were arrested Sept. 18 at Charleston. Boone County juries on Oct. 1 indicted 300 men.
      On Sept. 23 the Borderland Coal Co., a Mingo County corporation, applied to Judge Anderson for an injunction preventing the Central Competitive operators from collecting the "check-off," declaring it was used to support the union in its attacks on the operators in the Mingo field. Judge Anderson granted the injunction requested on Oct. 31. On Nov. 4 the federal Court of Appeals, at Chicago, suspended the decision, and on Dec. 15 that court sent the injunction back to Judge Anderson to be recast because it did not confine the grant of relief to the Borderland Coal Co., did not enjoin solely the interfering acts shown in the bill and affidavits, did not limit the prohibition of sending money into West Virginia to the use thereof in interfering acts and because it enjoined existing check-off contracts.
- - - - -
Over Three Hundred Indictments in Logan;
Troopers Serving Warrants Are Shot
      Frank Keeney, president of district No. 17; Fred Mooney, secretary-treasurer of that district; William Blizzard, president of Subdistrict No. 4, and A. C. Porter, secretary of Subdistrict No. 2, were indicted on Jan. 13 by the Grand Jury of Logan County on a charge of treason. About 300 indictments in all were openly returned, but there are other indictments for treason where the names of the defendants are not made public, as the men have not been arrested.
      The treason alleged is the attempt to overthrow Governor Morgan's proclamation of martial law in Mingo County and the raising of an army against the State of West Virginia and other acts prejudicial to the safety and welfare of the state. Keeney, Mooney and Blizzard are among ninety men being held in the county jail of Logan County on charges of conspiracy and of aiding, abetting and counseling Frank Kitchin in the alleged killing of John Gore, a Logan County deputy sheriff at the battle of Blair Mountain, where the armed march was stopped.
      When the troopers of the State Constabulary attempted on Jan. 15 at Dry Branch, Cabin Creek, to arrest a miner on a Logan County capias two of them were shot and seriously wounded, the shooting being done, it is said, by two relatives of the miner. The arrested man got away, and forty troopers were started on a hunt for the men.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
United Mine Workers Journal, Indianapolis, Indiana
Volume 33 Number 3
February 1, 1922, Page 15
Released On Bond
      A telegram from M. L. Haptonstall, acting secretary of District 17 to international headquarters of the United Mine VVorkers, says that Frank Keeney, Fred Mooney, \Villiam Blizzard, Frank Snyder, Isaac Scott and A. C. Porter, officials of District 17, who have been in jail in Logan county, are now out on bond and at their respective homes. These men were indicted on charges of treason by a Logan county, \Vest Virginia, grand jury, and then railroaded to jail in an effort by the operators to break up the union in West Virginia.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
Coal Age, Volume 21 Number 5, February 2, 1922
McGraw-Hill Company, Inc.; New York
West Virginia Mine Chiefs Are Bailed Out
      On Jan. 18 Keeney and Mooney were released from the Logan County jail on $15,000 bail. Blizzard also was bailed, but on $20,000 bail. Bail was refused to the eight men who are directly accused of taking part in the death of John Gore, a Logan County deputy sheriff, killed in the fighting at Blair Mountain. Bail was furnished by several other defendants during the same day. Judge Bland, on petition of counsel for the United Mine Workers, changed the venue for the trial to Jefferson County.
      Frank Snyder, editor of the West Virginia Federationist, a radical labor paper, and Isaac Scott, acting secretary-treasurer of the district union, have been arrested on a charge of treason and conspiracy.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
Coal Age, Volume 21 Number 16, April 20, 1922
McGraw-Hill Company, Inc.; New York
Keeney Defiant Toward Injunction
      Among those who will face trial at Charles Town, W. Va., on April 24, charged with various offences, are C. F. Keeney, president of District 17, Fred Mooney, secretary of that district, and William Blizzard, president of a subdistrict. Indictments against some of the two hundred or more defendants who will face trial charge treason, murder, insurrection and conspiracy and it is understood that the prosecution in some cases at least will ask that the extreme penalty be imposed.
      Notwithstanding the serious charges which Keeney and his associates must answer, he appears to be in a mood to defy the injunction which Judge McClintic issued on April 10 in order that the Mingo tent colonies be dismantled and those living in such colonies be disbanded, and that all union organization work be suspended.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
The DeKalb Daily Chronicle, DeKalb, Illinois
Volume 22, Number 122
Wednesday, April 26, 1922, Page 1
Defense Will Be Similar to That for Burr
(By United Press)
      Charleston, W. Va., April 26 -- The West Virginia treason trial will be fought on lines identical with those of the famous case of Aaron Burr, who was charged with being a traitor to the American government under Thomas Jefferson.
      This became known definitely today as the court met in preparation for trying the first of the Logan county mine war treason cases, brought against William Blizzard, president of the United Mine Workers organization in District No. 2.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
The DeKalb Daily Chronicle, DeKalb, Illinois
Volume 22, Number 121
April 26, 1922, Page 6
Begin Trial of Montaineers for Mine March
(By United Press)
      Charleston, W. Va., April 24 -- In the same quaint courthouse, where, in 1859, John Brown was convicted of treason in connection with the freeing of slaves, the trial of two hundred union miners began today.
      The accused two hundred were indicted in connection with the march of armed miners on Logan county of August, last year.
      Frank Keeney, president of District No. 17 of the United Mine Workers of America, Fred Mooney, Secretary of the district. William Blizzard and Frank V. Snyder are among those charged with "murder, treason and insurrection" in connection with the march.
      The feud between union and non-union miners which blazed out last summer and resulted in the trial smoldered for twenty-five years.
      Miners first began mobilizing in small groups near Madison and started their march toward Logan county, gathering recruits as they marched. Most of the marchers were armed with rifles or shotguns, some carried pistols and others picked up clubs along the roadside.
      Meanwhile Don Chafin, Sheriff of Logan county, mustered his forces to repel the "invasion.'' Motor cars and wagons took volunteers to the Logan county line. Machine guns were set up along the mountain ridge between Logan and Boone counties and airplanes were utilized for scout duty.
      At Blair mountain and Sharples, the marching miners concentrated their forces in an attempt to cross the line into Logan county. They were repulsed with nearly twenty men killed and fifty injured The defenders suffering only four dead Arrival of federal troops prevented further hostilities and the miners returned to their homes. Indictment of Keeney, Mooney and the others followed.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
United Mine Workers Journal, Indianapolis, Indiana
Volume 33 Number 9
May 1, 1922, Page 3
United Mine Workers Stop Attempt of Non-Union
Coal Companies to Destroy the Tent Colonies in
Mingo County and to Drive Out the Miners' Union
Tent Colony at Lick Creek, W. Va.
Tent Colony at Lick Creek, W. Va., Which Would Have Been Destroyed by Injunction
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
The St. Anne Record, St. Anne, Illinois
Volume 32, Number 41
Thursday, May 4, 1922, Page 6
      An aftermath of the West Virginia coal field war of 1921, the trial of nine miners' union officials and members on charges of treason, was opened in Charles Town, W. Va. The most prominent of the defendants are C. Frank Keeney, president, and Frank Mooney, secretary of district 17. Forty-four others are accused of treason and many others of murder and conspiracy. Some of these have not been arrested and some have obtained change of venue. After motions to quash the indictments had been denied the court ruled for separate trials and William Blizzard, known as "general of the march against Logan," was selected as the first defendant.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
Coal Age, Volume 21 Number 18, May 4, 1922
McGraw-Hill Company, Inc.; New York
Defense Wins Opening Skirmishes in
Treason Trial in West Virginia
      Effort of counsel of the twenty-three officials and members of United Mine Workers on trial for treason before Judge Woods in the Circuit Court at Charles Town, W. Va., to have the indictments quashed on the ground that they were improperly drawn were unsuccessful. The defendants gained a point, however, when the court on Tuesday, April 25, upheld their demand for a bill of particulars. Under the court order the prosecution must specify the overt acts of each of the twenty-three defendants charged with traitorous acts and give the time and place of and his connection with the commission of the crimes alleged.
      When the defense exercised its right to demand that each defendant be tried separately attorneys for the state elected to proceed with the trial of William Blizzard, president of subdistrict 2. Blizzard was arraigned on Tuesday, April 25, and pleaded not guilty, as did each of the other twenty-two defendants.
      Progress in Blizzard's trial was slow, as the defense stubbornly contested every move by the prosecution, insisting that "the state must lay its cards on the table." A jury composed of ten farmers, one merchant and one lumberman was chosen April 27. The prosecution called 275 witnesses and the defense 1,100.
      Forty-four mine locals were listed by the state in its amended bill of particulars as having been influenced by Blizzard to contribute to funds for the purpose of levying war on the state last autumn. Officials, are given by the state where they are known. Frank Snyder, president; Fred Mooney, secretary-treasurer, and Harold W. Houston, attorney, are on the list.
Blizzard and Mooney Branded As Conspirators
      In opening its case, the state charged Blizzard, Mooney and their associates with conspiring and executing a conspiracy to levy war against the State of West Virginia and particularly designed to nullify the effort of martial law in Mingo County and of gathering an unlawful assemblage for the purpose of destroying the sovereignty of the state. Reference was made to a statement in a printed circular issued in Charles Town about Aug. 1, 1921, in which they declared the time had come to act and that mere solutions were ineffective. This was followed, according to Attorney Belcher, by visits of the defendants and their associates to locals in different sections, when they urged miners to join in the invasions which followed.
      J. F. Stewart, a union miner, took the stand as the first witness for the state. He told of seeing gatherings of armed men on Lens Creek, near Marmet, from which point the march started. He testified that "Mother" Jones ad dressed the men, telling them they were violating the law and advising that they go home.
      Mrs. Stewart, the second witness, also told what she saw and heard at the meeting addressed by "Mother" Jones. She also told of driving her car with Keeney and District Secretary Mooney as passengers from Lens Creek, and of being stopped by an armed guard.
      Governor Morgan was called to the witness stand April 28. His testimony was confined largely to a recital of his actions in issuing the martial law proclamations for Mingo County, the double call for Federal troops, the response and turning back of the armed miners. The Governor was put on by the state. He also is summoned by the defense and indicated he would endeavor to return later when needed.
      Major Tom B. Davis, in charge of the operation of martial law in Mingo, and Captain Broaddus, his chief lieutenant, who was in command of the state troops at the battle of Blair Mountain, have been in Charles Town since April 26. Both are summoned as witnesses. Official announcement said that Attorney-General E. T. England, former Governor John J. Cornwell and Major-General A. A. Bandholtz had been summoned and would appear as needed.
      What threatened to be a serious clash between counsel occurred May 1, when the lie was passed to the State's Attorney by Harold Houston, chief of counsel for the defense, during a warm verbal exchange over the admission of evidence pertaining to the activities of Sheriff Don Chafin and his deputies in the Logan non-union coal fields.
      The fighting word was passed by Houston to A. M. Belcher, special prosecutor, when the latter intimated that the union counsel had knowledge of the fact that William Petry, vice-president of District 17, United Mine Workers, met to shoot Sheriff Chafin in the union headquarters at Charleston about two years ago. Belcher took up the challenge by declaring his willingness to meet the other belligerent "anywhere on that proposition."
      The court room was thrown into an uproar as the two attorneys glared at each other. The quick intervention of Judge Woods prevented a continuation of the hostilities, which broke out when Holly Smith, one of Sheriff Chafin's deputies, took the stand to testify against William Blizzard.
      Houston apologized to the Court for the scene, but there was no statement from the Special Prosecutor, and the situation was extremely tense when court adjourned for the day, after hearing testimony from several witnesses as to the armed march on the non-union coal fields last summer.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
Coal Age, Volume 21 Number 19, May 11, 1922
McGraw-Hill Company, Inc.; New York
Keeney Says Union Miners of West Virginia
Will Not Make Separate Agreement
      That the union miners of West Virginia will make no separate peace or agreement with the operators of West Virginia was the announcement made on April 26 at Charles Town, where Keeney and other officials of the United Mine Workers are undergoing trial charged with treason and other crimes. Keeney in making his announcement said that no matter what action might be taken in other states the members of District 17 and District 29 will stand by the International organization. This was the assurance given John L. Lewis, Keeney said, at a conference between Lewis and the officials of District 17 and District 29.
      Lewis discussed with John H. Sprouse, president, and John Gatherum and other officials of District 29 the temporary injunction against organization activities in the Winding Gulf and other non-union fields, but no statement was made as to the nature of the discussion nor what steps the officials proposed to take. Sprouse and Gatherum made the trip from Beckley for the express purpose of consulting Lewis.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
United Mine Workers Journal, Indianapolis, Indiana
Volume 33 Number 10
May 15, 1922, Page 3 - 5 & 17
Crowd in front of Courthouse
John L. Lewis, with group of attorneys and defendants, in treason trials at Charles Town, W. Va.
Treason in West Virginia
      Seven hundred and fifty miners and union officials are on trial in West Virginia for treason, conspiracy, murder and other charges growing out of the attempted march through Logan county into Mingo last September. The indictments were prepared in Logan county, but it was obvious that no miner could get anything resembling justice in a county owned from top to bottom by the operators, and, therefore, the defendants were granted a change of venue which transferred the cases to Jefferson county, at the eastern tip of the state.
      Jefferson county is largely populated by farmers; the juries will be farmer juries. Let us hope they will see the humor of indictments for treason and conspiracy drawn up against the miners by the operators of a county which those operators govern like a feudal earldom in the years before King John. The men who overthrew the Republican form of government in Logan county, who control the sheriff of the county and pay his deputies, who habitually employ intimidation and violence to prevent the spread of unionism, who have wiped out freedom of speech and of assembly in their territory, and who frankly admit these facts on the witness stand, are charging treason against the miners who tried to march across Logan in protest against the tyranny that existed and still exists there.
      While they are on the subject of treason, the courts of West Virginia should ask who was first guilty in Logan county of treason against the state and federal government and to the Constitution of the United States, which guarantees liberties abrogated in that county by the operators. The operators have taken over government throughout the county; they are the government. If there has been treason on the part of the miners, it was treason against the operators. If there has been rebellion, it was rebellion against the usurpation and the autocracy of corporations whose gunmen are no less gunmen for wearing the deputy sheriffs shield. -- New York World.
Crowd in front of Courthouse
Crowd of defendants and witnesses in treason trials in front of court house at Charles Town, W. Va.
No Evidence of Any Treasonable Intent Disclosed
in Trial of Miners at Charles Town, West Virginia
      At the time that this article was written the trial of William Blizzard, at Charles Town, W. Va., on a charge of treason against the state of West Virginia had been in progress for two weeks, and there appeared to be no end in sight, judging from the number of witnesses that had been summoned by both sides. Up to the end of the second week there had been no evidence of any treasonable intent on the part of Blizzard or any of the other officers and members of the United Mine Workers of America who are under indictment with him. What the evidence disclosed was this:
      1. Several thousand men, among them miners, farmers, business men, professional men and others, assembled at Marmet last August and marched to Logan county.
      2. Deputies, thugs and gunmen, paid by coal companies, had committed so many outrages against the coal miners of that section that the people refused longer to stand for such conditions, and they assembled as a matter of protest and protection.
      3. C. F. Keeney, president of District 17, made a speech to the assembled miners after they reached Madison, and advised them to return to their homes.
      4. When the Federal troops arrived on the scene of the trouble, Blizzard induced the men to lay down their arms and turn their guns in to the army officer, who informed them that they would be protected by the Federal forces. These armed men were holding a line on Blair mountain because they expected the armed deputies and gunmen of the coal companies to attack them.
      5. After President Keeney advised the men to stop the march and return home and they had obeyed his request, state police killed two inoffensive miners at Sharpless at night and this act caused the miners and others to resume their march toward Logan county. Had it not been for this attack by the state police the march would have ended with President Keeney's request.
      6. There has been much evidence that the marchers looted stores along the route to obtain supplies, and that men sent out by the marchers bought ammunition in various places.
      7. Armed guards were maintained by the marchers at various points along the roads, and persons traveling on these roads were stopped and turned back.
      But with all of this testimony, there was nothing to show that the marchers had any intention of overthrowing the government of the state of West Virginia or of Mingo or Logan counties. Some of the state's witnesses testified that they heard men say they were going to Logan county and "kill Don Chafin and his deputies and then go on to Mingo and release some prisoners." Chafin is the sheriff of Logan county and the head of the notorious deputy sheriff and thug system in that county.
      Attorneys for the defense, by cross-examination, brought out from some of the state's witnesses admissions that the main purpose of the marchers appeared to be to go into Logan and Mingo counties and organize the miners into local unions of the United Mine Workers of America. This, of course, would not constitute treason.
      E. C. Lee, a state witness, said in his examination that the reason the marchers started for Logan county was that they heard that Baldwin-Felts thugs were beating up people over there. This part of his examination was as follows:
Question. Did you receive any reports that there was anything going on there?
Answer. That night we did. We received reports that the Baldwin-Fells men had gone there and beat up some families.
Q. And that was the reason you understood they were going over there?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Who was it that was beating up some of the families?
A. The Baldwin-Felts.
Q. Who were they?
A. A gang of thugs that beat up people every chance they got.
Q. By whom were they employed?
A. By the operators.
(Objection by the state.)

      The Court. -- He has given you that reason as to why he supposed they were going over there. You are going beyond that and are asking for an explanation of the reason he gave.
      Mr. Townsend. -- He said they were going over there because he understood the Baldwin-Felts thugs had beat up some families. Now, I would like to find out by whom these Baldwin-Felts thugs were employed, because it goes to show the intent of this whole matter.
      Mr. Belcher. -- There is no evidence in this case that the Baldwin-Felts men were employed by anyone. As a matter of fact they were not.
      W. M. LePage, superintendent of the mine of the Sovereign Collieries Company, was summoned as a witness for the defense, but the state put him on the stand as a witness for the prosecution, and he gave some interesting testimony. LePage said while the trouble was in progress he brought some women and children out of the firing zone. Mr. Townsend. of counsel for the defense, cross-examined him as follows:
Q. You testified that you were bringing some women and children down the creek?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Where were you bringing them from?
A. Sovereign und Blair, both.
Q. Where were you taking them to?
A. Clothier.
Q. Did you tell the jury why you were taking them down there?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. What was the reason?
A. l told them l was taking them down there because they wanted to go. The real reason was it was too dangerous up there.
Q. What made it dangerous up there?
A. Bullets firing.
Q. Where were these bullets coming from?
A. Off the mountain.
Q. Who was firing them?
A. l didn't see.
Q. Who was up in the mountain?
A. Miners on one side and people from Logan on the other side and McDowell.
Q. The bullets they were afraid of, where would these bullets come from?
A. They were coming front the top of the mountain. I suppose.
Q. The line on the other side of the mountain. the deputies you are speaking of, they were facing Blair, were they not?
(Objection. Overruled.)
Q. That is true, isn't it?
A. That would be my opinion.
Q. Those were the bullets that they were afraid of? Wasn't the bullets of the miners, but the bullets coming from the other side?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Do you know any other reason why they were afraid in addition to the firing of the guns?
A. The talk was about that they were afraid they were coming into Blair and Sovereign.
Q. Who was coming into Blair and Sovereign?
A. The other side.
Q. What do you mean by "the other side?"
A. I mean the people from Logan and McDowell counties, them people that were congregating over there.
Q. Did you see any bombs there -- did you see any airplanes flying over?
A. Oh, yes.
Q. Did they drop any bombs?
A. I saw one dropped. I didn't see it. It was dropped very close to me, sort of gassy, just a gas bomb.
Q. Did it explode?
A. Yes, it exploded, but it didn't make any noise, because l didn't know it until after it. hit, just; fumes sort of, where it had turned the grass one thing another.
Q. That was just a gas bomb?
A. That is what l would cull it.
Q. Gave forth fumes?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Where did that come from?
A. Airplane.
Q. Airplane in the possession of whom?
A. l don't. know.
Q. The miners didn't have any airplanes, did they?
A. Not that I know of.
Q. Did you see them come from the other side of the mountain, over that way?
A. They just simply circled over.
Q. They always circled back toward the other side of the mountain, didn't they?
A. Yes. sir.
Re-direct examination. Questions by Mr. Osenton:
Q. Do you know whether or not the federal government had airplanes there?
A. That was my understanding they had some, too, yes, sir.
Re-cross examination. Questions by Mr. Townsend:
Q. The federal government didn't drop any bombs in there, did they?
A. I don't. know who did it.

      At one time during the trial there was a flare-up that looked like trouble in the courtroom for a moment, but it blew over and matters again became serene. Holly Smith, one of Don Chafin's deputy sheriffs in Logan county, was on the witness stand as a witness for the state, and he was asked about his salary. He said Chafin paid him $175 a month, giving his personal check for the amount instead of a county cheek. Mr. Houston, of counsel for the defense, asked Smith whether he knew the money to pay his salary was furnished by coal operators. Smith said he did not know.
      "Don Chafin is a coal operator himself, isn't he?" Houston asked.
"I believe he has an interest in a mine," said the witness.
      The state objected to this question and answer. Then the following argument took place:
      Mr. Houston. -- We desire to show the compensation of this man, because we consider it vital to the issue. This man was only ostensibly a deputy sheriff and was compensated by the coal operators of Logan county. He has testified that the sheriff paid him with his personal check, and that he was not paid by the county.
      The Court. -- Don Chafin, as I understand, is the sheriff of Logan county, and this witness is his duly appointed deputy. I cannot see any reason for going into the matter further than that, he being an officer of the law.
      Mr. Houston. -- It raises here directly, it seems to me, your honor, an issue that is notorious -- the payment of deputy sheriffs by coal companies. Now, here is a man that is one of the men that is carrying out that system of government in Logan county, and while he may be appointed deputy sheriff legally, we believe we have a right to go back of that and show that he is carrying out the instructions of the operators.
      The Court. -- They, no doubt, were appointed under the statute permitting railroad companies and coal companies to select officers to protect their property, and have them clothed with the power of officers.
      Mr. Houston. -- We have a statute prohibiting the appointment of deputy sheriffs by anyone, and I think Mr. Belcher was instrumental in passing that law.
      M. Belcher. -- Here is a sheriff that is duly elected, and he has appointed his deputy, and the mere fact that some politician, some Socialist, or some I. W. W. has denounced that, has no effect on this case. Here is a man who is duly appointed deputy sheriff, and he has a right to maintain law and order in any county where he is appointed.
      The Court. -- This is an indictment for treason. The question before the jury is whether this defendant is guilty or not guilty of treason. Now. suppose he did have a grievance; that could not justify the levying of war against the state.
      Mr. Houston. -- I do not contend that, but it goes to the very purpose of the defendant; it goes to the purpose of the men involved in this march. lt shows these men had no intention of interfering with the government of the state, but it was a grievance against an organization under which they had been oppressed, by men acting under the cloak of deputy sheriffs.
      Mr. Belcher. -- lf the laws were being violated; if some one was doing that which he should not do, it is the function of government to remedy this wrong, and it is not the right of any individual or class to take it upon them selves. For this reason, your honor, l contend this evidence is not admissible.
      Mr. Houston. -- We expect to show here in the evidence that the gentlemen who are backing this prosecution have known for a number of years that enormous sums of money were paid to the sheriff each year to hire men to make war on the miners. These sums of money ran to thirty and forty thousand dollars, and during the first nine months of last, year they paid him over sixty thousand dollars to employ these deputy sheriffs. A large number of miners visited Charleston with bandaged heads to ask the Governor to restore order in Logan county.
      Mr. Belcher. -- Now, I want to say right here in reply to that, that the miners of Logan county had never wanted to deal with this organization. This sheriff Don Chafin, the vice-president of District 17 shot in the headquarters of the United Mine Workers at Charleston. William Petry, district vice-president shot Don Chafin after conferring with Mr. Houston.
      Mr. Houston. -- If you say I know anything about this. I say it is a lie.
      Mr. Belcher. -- I can prove that you did.
      The Court. -- This defendant here is on trial for treason, and he must either plead guilty or not guilty. I understand it is the purpose to prove that the motives actuating this defendant and his colleagues was that they considered they had a grievance against the law of the state. Is that the idea?
      Mr. Houston. -- Yes, sir. The court will recall that the meeting at Charleston was to ask the Governor to change this law.
      The Court. -- Well, their motive in organizing this march and going into Logan and Mingo counties would be either to repeal that law or some other purpose. If it was for some other purpose, this testimony would not be admissible, of course, and if it was to compel the repeal of this law I cannot see that that would justify levying war against the state. If the evidence should show that they levied war against the state, they could not justify it by saying that there was a statute on the statute books of this state under which they were oppressed.
      Mr. Houston. -- Will the court pardon me? I believe he is laboring under a misapprehension. There was a statute in existence at this time prohibiting the employment of deputy sheriffs by private persons. They were seeking to enforce an existing law. It is our contention that the statute was violated by the employment of these deputy sheriffs, and it was not an effort to abrogate a law.
      Mr. Townsend. -- I think the evidence, not only of this witness. but along this line generally, is proper on this phase of the case. Your honor has properly stated that there is no defense to treason. He either did it or he did not, but the intent has everything to do with it. There can be no crime without intent. If it can be shown that in Logan county generally a system was in effect whereby the sheriff employed deputies, ostensibly deputies, but in reality for other purposes, and that those deputies kept out of that county people who were attempting to organize it, and that this march was organized as a protest against this system, it seems to me we have a right to show it.
      The Court. -- I suppose the witness has about finished answering those inquiries, and I will, therefore, reserve ruling on this until the question comes up.
      The defense did not disclose the line of its action while the state was presenting its testimony. However, it was evident that the attorneys for the defense had their plans fully outlined.
      The trial is attracting nation-wide attention. Many of the largest newspapers of the country have special correspondents in attendance, and all of the press associations also are represented. Citizens of Charles Town and vicinity have treated the indicted miners and the witnesses with every courtesy and kindness. The hotels in Charles Town were unable to care for all of the visitors, and practically every home in the town was thrown open to them. Scores of miners are rooming in many of the best homes in Charles Town. A fraternal feeling has sprung up between the miners and local people.
      One of the interesting events was a baseball game between a team composed of miners and the local Charles Town team, which resulted in a victory for the miners. New uniforms were provided for the members of the miners team, and they were every inch a bull team. A large crowd attended the game, and the proceeds were given to the Charles Town hospital.
treason trial Baseball Team
Baseball team, composed of coal miners, awaiting trial at Charles Town, W. Va., on charges of treason and murder, and witnesses in the cases. William Blizzard, the first man tried, is in the front row holding the baseball bat, but not in uniform. This team played two games with the Charles Town team.
Treason Trial Nearing Close
      That the statement that Blizzard led a body of men over the hill is a pure fabrication without a scintilla of truth. The evidence will show that on the 26th Blizzard was in the city of Charleston; that on Saturday, the 27th of August, Blizzard left the city of Charleston in an automobile in company with Gen. Bandholtz. Mr. Ford, a subordinate of Gen. Bandholtz, has already testified that Blizzard went on the 27th as far as the mouth of Lens Creek. The evidence will show that he went to the mouth of Lens Creek, and over to the town of Racine, and that Gen. Bandholtz and he went for the specific purpose of seeing that the men were actually returning. The evidence will show that Mr. Keeney, the president of District No. 17, and Mr. Mooney, the secretary-treasurer of District No. 17, made a trip from the city of Charleston to Madison, in an attempt to stop these men; that at the instance of Gen. Bandholtz they went over there and almost met with violence themselves in the attempt to accommodate the officers of the government. They went to Madison on the 27th and advised these men to return home, as witnesses for the state admit, and the trip that Gen. Bandholtz and the defendant made over to Racine on that day was to see that they were returning. Gen. Bandholtz never went any further. The evidence of one of the state's witnesses, this man Reynolds, I believe, said that Gen. Bandholtz went to the town of Madison. The evidence of Gen. Bandholtz will show that he was never at the town of Madison; that he never went further than Racine, nor were there any other military officers over there on the date that Ed. Reynolds says he saw them.
      "The date this defendant, the 27th of August, went over to Racine, he came back to the city of Charleston that night and stayed around there. The defendant lives between St. Albans and Charleston, a distance of about 12 miles, and to go up Coal River you leave Charleston by a street car or the C. & O. Railway and go to St. Albans, and go from there to Danville and Madison. From that time until the 27th, 28th, 29th, 30th, 31st of August and the 1st day of September, all of those dates, this defendant was at his home and around the city of Charleston. The defendant was in Logan County on Friday and Saturday, the 2nd and 3rd of September.
      "The evidence will show that Gen. Bandholtz went to Mr. Petry, the vice-president of District l7, who was in charge of headquarters during the absence of Mr. Keeney, and they went to this defendant to see if he could not get these men to go back. Mr. Blizzard made that trip at the instance of Gen. Bandholtz, to bring these men back. He went to Madison and conferred with one of the military officers, and went up the creek and notified these men that the Federal troops had come in, so that there would not be any trouble. It was reported that the Federal troops were to come in on Friday, but they did not arrive on that day. They arrived at the town of Madison, and the defendant, at the request of the military officers, went on up above Madison in the night time to notify these men and tell them the Federal troops were coming there the next morning and for them to surrender their arms to them. The defendant went on up on the 2nd of September, that was on Friday, to the town of Blair, and he did stand up there on the schoolhouse steps and advise these men to surrender.
      "It will be shown that there is not a scintilla of truth in the testimony of that man Brinkman, that circus rider, that this defendant ever took any ammunition up there, but he did go there to advise the men to go back, went with some of the members of the Federal army, about ten of them, I think, the evidence will show. He first went in a Ford car to try to get these men to go back and lay down their arms, but they refused to do it, most of them giving him as explanation of their conduct that they were afraid these gunmen of Logan County would descend upon them, and there would be shooting around those towns, and they insisted on keeping their arms until the Federal troops came in and assured them protection. Going back to Sharples or Madison that night, Mr. Blizzard went up there the next day, the 3rd, on a train with ten members of the Federal army, to attempt to get these men out of there and to lay down their arms. The train passed the town of Blair and he got off, and that was the time they saw him on the schoolhouse steps. The train went on up to Sovereign and turned around and came back and Mr. Blizzard came on that train. The evidence will show that he was never there except on these two occasions, on September 2nd and September 3rd, and that both times he was acting under the instructions of the Federal officers. He was never there before the 2nd, and was never there after the 3rd.
      "These are the facts that will be proven by unquestionable and unequivocal testimony, and so far as having any intent to overthrow the government or to impair the government in any way, there is not a scintilla of truth in the charge of the state."

- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
United Mine Workers Journal, Indianapolis, Indiana
Volume 33 Number12
June 15, 1922, Page 9
Head of the Armed Deputies That Rule the Coal Fields of Logan County, W.Va.
Don Chafin
      This is a picture of Don Chafin, sheriff of Logan county, West Virginia, and the man upon whom the non-union coal operators depend to keep the United Mine Workers of America out of that county. Chafin testified before a Senate committee a few months ago that he was himself a. coal operator and that he was worth $350,000. He also admitted that the non-union operators of Logan county furnished him with more than $60,000 last year with which to pay the salaries of deputy sheriffs in that county. Chafin was a witness for the coal operators in the trial of William Blizzard, at Charles Town. W. Va., in which Blizzard was found not guilty of treason. The evidence at that trial showed that Chafin was the recognized head of the force of deputies, mine guards and gunmen that was responsible for the march to Logan county that took place last August.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
United Mine Workers Journal, Indianapolis, Indiana
Volume 33 Number12
June 15, 1922, Page 16
Logan County Operators Fail to Convict William Blizzard on Treason Charge
Photo of William Blizzard         After a trial that lasted five weeks, a jury at Charles Town, West Virginia, returned a verdict of not guilty in the case against William Blizzard, who was charged by the Logan county coal operators with treason against the state of West Virginia. The jury reported its verdict at 9:30 Saturday night, May 27. The court room was crowded at the time, and when the verdict was read and it was learned that Blizzard was free the crowd broke out with cheers that shook the building. There was a wild demonstration. Friends lifted Blizzard from the floor and carried him on their shoulders, while hundreds of people shouted and cheered. The demonstration continued for fully an hour. Charles Town people joined with the miners who were present for the trial in marching up and down the streets of the town in celebration of the failure of the Logan county coal operators to carry out their purpose to send Blizzard and many other members of the United Mine Workers of America to the penitentiary.
      Attorneys for the coal operators announced later that they would next try Rev. J. M. Wilburn on a. charge of murder in connection with the march in August of last year, and his trial was set for Monday, June 12. They also said they would try President C. F. Keeney and Secretary-Treasurer Fred Mooney, also, on a treason charge, but no date was fixed for their trials.
      The coal operators failed miserably in their attempt to convict Blizzard, who is president of Sub-District 2, of District l7. They placed about 150 witnesses on the stand, but even with all of that array of help they were unable to convince the jury of level-headed and fair-minded citizens of Jefferson county that Blizzard was guilty of the high crime of treason. The fact is that as the trial progressed it was not so much Blizzard who was on trial as the coal operators themselves and their Logan county methods. The defense succeeded in bringing out before the jury a large amount of evidence showing how the coal operators run Logan county with the aid of their hired gun men and thugs. One of the bits of testimony that caused much resentment among those who heard it was given by an aviator. He was not connected with the army nor with any other military force, but was a private flyer. He testified that he flew his airplane over the miners' camps in Logan county and that he dropped bombs on them. Some of these bombs were explosive and were filled with scraps of iron. Others were gas bombs. This aviator testified that he worked at this job four days and that the Logan county coal operators paid him $100 a. day. Another witness testified that one of the gas bombs landed near his house, and that the gas sickened his wife and children, killed two pigs in his lot and withered the vegetation.
      Attorneys for the coal operators decided to try Blizzard first because they believed they had a stronger case against him than any of the other defendants. If that was true, they have little chance to convict any one else.
      It was evident that the coal operators failed to make much of a hit with the jury or with the people of Charles Town by permitting their witnesses to testify in regard to the activities of the armed guards and gunmen and the methods employed by Sheriff Don Chafin and his deputies in their handling of the mining situation in Logan county. Chafin was a witness for the prosecution, but even his evidence failed to convict Blizzard.

- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
United Mine Workers Journal, Indianapolis, Indiana
Volume 33 Number 15
August 1, 1922, Page 7
      Charleston, W. Va. -- Indictments against members and otiicers of the United Mine Workers containing counts of murder, arson and conspiracy, in connection with industrial trouble in Mingo county, were quashed by Judge R. D. Bailey of the Mingo county circuit court, according to word received here from Williamson. The action was taken at the request of Prosecuting Attorney Stokes, who told the court he "couldn't make a case against them for lack of evidence."
      Among the indictments which were stricken from the docket were those against David Robb, international finance officer of the United Mine Workers; C. Frank Keeney, president. of District No. 17; Fred Mooney, district secretary-treasurer; A. D. Lavender, C. H. Workman, district board members, and about 65 others.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
United Mine Workers Journal, Indianapolis, Indiana
Volume 33 Number 17
September 1, 1922, Page 14
New Miners' Trials On
      Charles Town, W. Va. -- With more than 100 witnesses from the coal section, the trial of Walter Allen, charged by the coal owners with attempting to "overthrow the state" opened last Monday. The state's attorneys are practically all in the pay of coal owners. These attorneys state that with the conclusion of the Allen trial, they will try Frank Keeney and Fred Mooney, president and secretary-treasurer of district No. 17, and William Blizzard, president of sub-district No. 2, on indictments charging them with being accessories before the fact of the murder of Logan county guards.
      Mooney and Blizzard were recently chosen in the Kanawha county primaries as candidates for the house of delegates at the state capitol. The coal owners are making strenuous efforts to fasten murder charges on them.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
United Mine Workers Journal, Indianapolis, Indiana
Volume 33 Number 18
September 15, 1922, Page 10
- - - -
- - - - -
      When the case against C. F. Keeney, President of District 17, was brought for trial at Charles Town, West Va., October 24, attorneys for the defense sprung a surprise on the lawyers representing the prosecution, President Keeney was indicted by a grand jury in Logan county, West Va., on a charge of being an accessory before the fact to the murder of Deputy Sheriff Munsey during the march of miners and other citizens in August, 1921. The cases against President Keeney and several hundred others were taken to Charles Town on a change of venue in order that they might be tried somewhere else than in Logan county, where a union miner cannot get justice.
      No sooner was the case called for trial at Charles Town than Attorney T. C. Townsend asked:
"Who are the attorneys representing the state?"
      The lawyers for the prosecution were named to him, and Mr. Townsend then filed a motion asking that the court instruct the prosecuting attorney of Jefferson county to take charge of the case. He pointed out to the court that the attorneys for the prosecution were employed by the non-union coal companies, who were paying them for their services. He said these coal company lawyers had shoved the prosecutor for Jefferson county aside and assumed full charge of the case. lt is not the state of West Virginia that is prosecuting Mr. Keeney and these other defendants, he said, but the coal companies that are trying to drive the United Mine Workers of America out of West Virginia.
      Mr. Townsend showed the court that these same coal companies were furnishing the money with which to pay the witnesses, the deputy sheriffs, the jurors and everything else connected with the prosecution, and that it was nothing more nor less than a case of the coal companies against the union miners, and not the state of West Virginia against the defendants.
      The attorneys for the coal companies were taken off their feet by the suddenness of Mr. Townsend's action, and they asked for time to prepare an answer. Later the court sustained the motion of Mr. Townsend and directed the prosecuting attorney of Jefferson county to take charge of the case. This action put the first crimp in the coal companies' lawyers.
      Immediately afterward, Mr. Townsend filed a second motion, this time for a change of venue from Jefferson county to some other county. In support of this motion, he filed a large number of affidavits to show that President Keeney could not have a fair and impartial trial in Jefferson county because of the propaganda circulated by the coal companies. Some of the afiidavits alleged improper actions on the part of certain court attaches, also.
      Judge Woods took the matter under advisement and later he handed down a decision in favor of Presient Keeney. The court granted the change of venue and the Keeney case and all of the other cases will be tried somewhere else, if they are ever tried at all. There is a general impression that unless the coal company lawyers can have charge of the cases and run them to suit themselves, regardless of the prosecuting attorneys, they will never push the trials.
      The same coal company lawyers who were in the Keeney case also had complete charge of the prosecution of William Blizzard, when he was tried at Charles Town on a charge of treason. Blizzard, it will be remembered, was acquitted by the jury. They also had charge of the prosecution in the cases of Rev. J. M. Wilburn and John Wilburn, charged with murder, and Walter Allen, on a treason charge. The two Wilburns and Allen were convicted. Since the decision of the court in granting the change of venue and ousting the coal company lawyers from active control of the cases, attorney Townsend proposes to carry their cases to the West Virginia supreme court, where he will ask that the convictions be set aside.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
The DeKalb Daily Chronicle, Dekalb, Illinois
Volume 22, Number 272
Saturday, October 21, 1922, Page 6
Keeney Trial Begins Today in East State
(By United Press)
      Charles Town, W. Va Oct. 21 -- Attorneys and defense began arriving here today for the Kenney trial which begins Monday in Jefferson county court.
      West Virginia union miners' chief, C. Frank Kenney, is under indictment for treason, conspiracy and in connection with the murder of John Gore, Logan county deputy, during the armed march of union miners and sympathizers, on Logan and Mingo counties, in August, 1921.
      Counsel for the state have announced the union leader will first be tried on the murder charge, a panel of 23 veniremen has been drawn. Twenty of the possible jurymen are farmers.
      Union officials attach even greater importance to the Keeney trial than to the trial of William Blizzard, young mine union official who was acquitted of a treason charge after a trial lasting several weeks. Keeney is the "big boss" and finding of the court will be a decided boost on thrust at unionism in West Virginia's mines.
      Since the Blizzard trial, three similar cases have been tried and convictions obtained in each. Rev. J. E. VVilburn, sympathizer, and John Wilburn, his son, were each convicted of murder in the second degree,in connection with the death of John Gore. Sentence is expected to be passed when the court opens Monday. Walter Allen was found guilty of treason, with a recommendation of a jail sentence of 10 years rather than death. He is now serving time in county jail.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
Coal Age, Volume 22 Number 18, November 2, 1922
McGraw-Hill Company, Inc.; New York
      At the opening of the trial of C. F. Keeney, president of District 17, U. M. W., in Charles Town on Oct. 23, under an indictment charging him with being an accessory before the fact in the killing of Deputy Sheriff George Munsey, of Logan County, during the armed march of 1921, T. C. Townsend, chief counsel for the president of the district mine workers' organization, entered a demand to know who was representing the state and at the same time made the charge that previous prosecutions had been financed by the Logan operators' association. He contended that a conspiracy existed to crush unionism in the state. Replying to Mr. Townsend, Colonel F. W. Brown told the court that he and three other attorneys in addition to Don Chaffin, prosecuting attorney of Logan County, represented the state.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
United Mine Workers Journal, Indianapolis, Indiana
Volume 33 Number 22
November 15, 1922, Page 14
Making the Best of the Situation
Feitush Family with tent
      The picture shows August Feitush and his wife and child living in a tent near Wellsburg, W. Va. The Feitush family was ejected from their home because he is a member of the United Mine Workers and refused to work for starvation wages. They appear to be not worrying about having to live in a tent.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
Coal Age, Volume 22 Number 24, December 14, 1922
McGraw-Hill Company, Inc.; New York
Keeney Murder Trial to Begin in January
Before Judge Woods in Morgan County
      Trial of C. Frank Keeney, president of district 17, United Mine Workers of America, on the charge of being a murder accessory, such a charge growing out of the armed march last year, will begin soon after Jan. 1. Keeney's trial is to be in Morgan County under a second change of venue granted by Judge J. M. Woods. Morgan County is in Judge Woods' circuit, so that Keeney's trial will be under Judge Woods' direction just as all other trials growing out of the armed march have been. Morgan County was selected by Judge Woods as the county for the trial after attorneys for the state and for the defense had failed to reach an agreement, as there is no coal mined in Morgan and because Judge Woods felt that it was not involved in the industrial controversy. Court will be convened at Berkeley Springs, Jan. 2.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -
Coal Age, Volume 22 Number 26, December 28, 1922
McGraw-Hill Company, Inc.; New York
      By an agreement between attorneys for the state and defendants, the trial of C. Frank Keeney, president of District 17, United Mine Workers of America, will take place at Berkeley Springs, Morgan County, Feb. 19, it has been announced by Attorney A. M. Belcher, representing the prosecution. this date for the trial, it is understood will be formally fixed by Judge John Mitchell Woods of the Morgan Circuit Court, when the regular term opens at Berkeley Springs, Jan. 2.
- - - - -       - - - - -      - - - - -

Coal & Coal Mining in Illinois
© 2018    Wayne Hinton
Coal Mining logo