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TABLE 145.-Per cent of foreign-born male employees who were engaged in mining before coming to the United States, by locality and by race.

(STUDY OF EMPLOYEES.)

[This table includes only races with 100 or more males reporting in each of two or more localities. The total, however, is for all foreign-born.]

Bohemian and Moravian..

Croatian..

English.

French.

German.

Italian, North
Italian, South

Lithuanian.

Magyar.

Polish.

Russian.

Scotch..

Slovak..

Total.

Race.

Bohemian and Moravian.

Bulgarian....

Croatian..

English...

French.

German.

Irish..

Italian, North

Italian, South

Race.

Lithuanian..

Magyar..

Montenegrin..
Polish..

Russian

Ruthenian.

Scotch..

Slovak.

Slovenian..

Swedish..

Welsh...

Total..

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Middle
West.

7.7

4.3

10.9

4.2

9.8

7.8

15.9

88.2

10.7

20.0

15.5

87.6

20.7

72.4

7.1

87.8

59.7

22.8

23.3

3.6

17.7

14.2

7.3

92.4

15.1

30.5

Farming
or farm
labor.

16.4

75.3

84.7

2.6

6.8

18.6

25.9

57.2

66.5

79.2

a Not computed, owing to small number involved.

TABLE 146.-Per cent of foreign-born male employees in each specified occupation before coming to the United States, by race.

(STUDY OF EMPLOYEES.)

[This table includes only races with 100 or more males reporting. The total, however, is for all foreignborn.]

68.5

91.5

Pennsyl-
vania.

68.9

79.8

66.2

1.8

41.0

3.4 78.5

56.9

49.9

5.3

4.8

4.5

9.2

7.2

7.3

84.5

8.7

68.4

57.6

57.7

1.7

58.0

14.4

5.9

7.6

4.7

3.0

10.2

6.7

7.8

11.6

South.

14.4

8.2

9.5

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.8

8.8

6.3

11.9

2.5

12.1

5.7

9.9

3.4

9.3

2.5

(n)

(a)

(4)

3.7

5.1

(a)

5.0

7.2

(a)

(a)
10.4

10.4

Per cent who were engaged in

1.2

.0

1.2

2.0

2.0

General Manu- Hand
labor. facturing. trades.

4.1

1.9

South-
west.

2.4

1.0

(a)

(a)

1.7

1.2

87.6

90.3

65.8

21.6

9.4

11.0

.0

2.9

1.8

2.6

.4

1.4

2.6

1.4

.0

1.9

(a)

33.1

(a)

54.1

43.0

16.4

5.1

3.9

3.8

2.8

11.0

2.8

10.2

7.1

5.5

7.8

1.7

7.5

3.1

1.3

Total bituminous

coal mining.

2.7

5.2

11.1

11.3

2.2

7.0

57.6

3.6

82.6

72.2

55.0

13.7

7.7

4.3

10.9

9.8

7.8

88.2

10.7

20.7

Other occupations.

2.5

2.5

1.9

6.1

6.0

4.6

2.5

4.8

3.3

1.2

2.2

1.7

2.1

1.2

2.0

4.5

2.2

3.0

4.2

5.1

3.0

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Per cent of foreign-born male employees in mining and in farming or farm labor before coming to the United States, by race. [This chart shows only races with 400 or more employees reporting. The total, however, is for all foreign-born.]

= MINING

= FARMING OR FARM LABOR

The tables are compiled from original data. Of all the individuals for whom information was secured, only 20.7 per cent were employed in mining before coming to the United States. Except in the case of the Swedes, the proportion of the men of the races of northern and western Europe who were employed abroad in mining is not less than 55 per cent for any race. The figure for the Scotch is 88.2 per cent and that for the Welsh is 87.6 per cent. Among the southern and eastern Europeans the proportion in no case exceeds 20 per cent. This proportion is reported for the Slovenians, while only 3.6 per cent of the Croatians were miners before coming to the United States. A very large proportion of the individuals of the races of this group were farmers or farm laborers abroad. The proportion varies from 91.5 per cent for the Montenegrins to 57.2 per cent for the North Italians. A smaller proportion of the recent immigrants were employed as general laborers. It will be noted that of the men of the races of northern and western Europe comparatively few were farmers or farm laborers. The contrast in occupations before coming to the United States between the old and the recent immigrants is made very clear by the foregoing chart.

Men of the races of the old immigration have been employed in the mines of the United States for many years. As a result of their experience both in this country and abroad they are far better qualified as miners than are the southern and eastern Europeans. The older immigrants speak English either as their native tongue or, as in the case of the Germans and Scandinavians, because of long residence in this country. They may be treated in almost every respect upon the same basis as the American miners.

The employees of the races of the recent immigration, on the other hand, have been in the United States for so short a period of time that even though it be assumed that they have been employed in mining ever since their arrival, they must have had but a brief

experience at most in the mines of this country. The data further show that very few of their number had mining experience abroad.

As it has been seen that a very large proportion of the deaths and injuries reported for the coal mines of the United States occur among the less experienced miners, it is clear that the employees of the races of southern and eastern Europe, having had little experience in mining either in this country or abroad, are particularly liable to accidents. And as the responsibility for accidents rests in most cases with the men injured, to say that they are particularly liable to accidents is in effect to say that they are responsible for a considerable proportion of all the accidents occurring in the mines.

The mine accidents for which the workmen are themselves responsible fall naturally into two classes—those due to carelessness and those due to ignorance. As regards the first of these, it is probable that the foreigner is no greater offender than the person of native birth. The Americans and other English-speaking miners are undoubtedly reckless, and a very large proportion of all the accidents occurring among their number seem to be due to this cause. Grave risks are often incurred for the sake of avoiding a little extra labor. Props are left unplaced, open lamps are used instead of closed lamps, cars are driven in a careless manner, explosives are handled recklessly-all in defiance of the most elementary rules of cautious mining and by men of long experience in the industry.

Among the recent immigrants, on the other hand, many of the accidents are unquestionably due to ignorance. Unlike the majority of the American miners, almost all the recent immigrants employed in the mines are without previous training or experience in their work. As has been seen, most of them were farm laborers in their native countries. Upon coming to the United States they decided to follow the occupation of mining because the work was better paid than any other obtainable. Many of them have been here only a few months and many more but a year or two. Under these circumstances it is not surprising that they know little or nothing of rock formations, of fire damp, of the properties of coal dust, and of the handling of explosives—matters about which every coal miner should be thoroughly informed. To determine whether a piece of slate or roof is or is not likely to fall, often requires a considerable degree of experience, and the majority of the Slavs, Magyars, and Italians have not this experience.

Another element of danger is contributed by the fact that few of the recent immigrants speak or understand English, while almost none are able to read or write the language. It is probable that the instruc

tions of the mine bosses and inspectors are, because of this fact, freI quently misunderstood. An inspector, for example, tells an immi

grant miner, in English of course, that his roof needs propping. The miner seems to understand, but does not, and a fall results. In some mines printed signs are used to indicate the presence of gas or other peril. These are quite unintelligible to most of the foreigners. Because, through lack of training, they are unable to recognize the presence of danger, and further because of their keenness for earning money, the immigrants are often willing to work in places where more experienced or more intelligent men would refuse to work. For the same reasons they will frequently be satisfied with and accept mine equipment too defective for safety.

As has been stated, it is generally conceded by the persons best informed upon the subject that the responsibility for a majority of the accidents in coal mines rests with the men injured. This being the case, it is evident that the relative number of fatalities among the employees of a given race or group of races will serve as a valuable indication of the extent to which the high death rate in the mines is to be attributed to the employment of men of this race or group. In other words, an inquiry as to the responsibility of a given race for accidents may perhaps best be answered by showing the extent to which its members are sufferers from accidents.

FATALITIES IN WEST VIRGINIA, PENNSYLVANIA, AND INDIANA.

The extent to which the different groups of employees suffer from accidents may be shown for the State of West Virginia by statistics. In the table presented on page 228 information has been given as to the race or nationality of employees of the bituminous mining industry of the State. The tables next presented show the race or nationality of all the men killed or fatally injured in the mines during the period of five years, 1904 to 1908, inclusive.

Table 147.-- Number of fatalities in the bituminous coal mines of West Virginia, by

race or nationality of individual, 1904 to 1908. (From annual reports of the State Inspector of Mines for West Virginia: Report for 1904, p. 132; Report

for 1905, p. 143; Report for 1906, p. 161; Report for 1907, p. 205; Report for 1908, p. 212.)

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TABLE 148.-Number of fatalities in the bituminous coal mines of West Virginia, 1904

to 1908, by racial groups a; per cent distribution. [From annual reports of the State Inspector of Mines for West Virginia: Report for 1904, p. 132; Report

for 1905, p. 143; Report for 1906, p. 161; Report for 1907, p. 205; Report for 1908, p. 212.)

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In the second of the foregoing tables the figures for the period have been combined, the nationalities have been grouped, and the percentages have been computed. Comparing these percentages with those of the table on page 228, it will be seen that while, in 1908, only 28.9 per cent of all the employees were of the races classified under Group II, 43 per cent of all the men killed or fatally injured during the five years 1904 to 1908, inclusive, were of these races. This means that the proportion of fatalities is decidedly greater among the employees of Group II than among the employees of Group I. Upon the basis of the average yearly number of 'fatalities for the

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