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grated in considerable numbers. They were followed within a year or two by a few Magyars, and the number of immigrants of this race gradually increased each year. The Polish immigration began about 1890, although individual members of the race had been coming for a period of nine or ten years. After the year 1890 Poles and Slovaks arrived in great numbers. A few Italians were employed before the year 1895, but the immigration of this race did not begin upon a large scale until about 1900. Croatians were employed in some sections before 1890, and Servians began to arrive in small numbers in the early nineties. The great bulk of all the immigration from southern and eastern Europe, however, has occurred within the past eight or nine years. Russians, Bulgarians, Roumanians, Ruthenians, Syrians, Armenians, Macedonians, Croatians, Servians, as well as Poles, Magyars, Slovaks, and Italians, have been among the recent arrivals.
As a result of the rapid expansion of the mining industry already referred to, many of the mining communities have been founded, and their population is largely made up of immigrants who have been coming to the region during recent years. Wherever mines have been in operation for a period of thirty years or over, the course of immigration to the locality has been substantially the same as the immigration to the entire region since 1870.6 As regards the bituminous region of Pennsylvania as a whole, it may be said that the immigration of English-speaking and northern European races has been proportionately very small since 1890, and at the present time has practically ceased. On the other hand, the races of southern and eastern Europe continue to arrive and to find employment in the mines in undiminished numbers.
In order that the movements of the different races to the bituminous regions may be made more apparent, the history of immigration to certain localities and districts may be presented in detail. With this object in view, the district which is probably the most instructive as well as the most representative for study is the section known both scientifically and popularly as the Connellsville coke region. This region is a narrow strip of territory extending along the western foot of the Chestnut Ridge from Point Marion, Masontown, and Brownsville on the Monongahela River to Greensburg and Latrobe, over 60 miles to the northeast. Very extensive development has taken place in this district, and immigration has been heavy. The first coke in the Connellsville region was made in the year 1841. The business increased slightly by 1851, but its development was very slow. In 1855, on both rivers above Pittsburg, there were only 26 coke ovens, In 1860, a railroad completed its eastern branch through Connellsville into Pittsburg. The latter city began getting its coke from Connellsville, and the real development of the region immediately began. During the year 1860, 30 ovens were constructed. Although somewhat hindered by the civil war, the industry grew very rapidly, and after the war there was an extensive development until the panic of 1873. During this same period the first mines were opened in the northern end of the region, though some years passed before coke was made there. During the seven
a See History of Immigration to Community A, p. 479. o See History of Immigration to Community B, p. 534.
years 1873 to 1879, the coke business was very dull and development was checked. Beginning with 1880, however, the industry began to recover, and since that date great development has taken place.
The following table shows the number of ovens in operation each year, together with the amount of coke shipped during the period, 1880 to 1907:
Table 161.—Number of coke ovens and number of tons of coke shipped in Pennsylvania, 1880 to 1907.
[Compiled from annual reports of the Secretary of Internal Affairs, Pennsylvania.]
The table next submitted shows the production of coal in Westmoreland and Fayette counties since 1890. While this table embraces a little more than the coke region itself, by far the greater part of this production came from those mines which also operate coke ovens. The table is of value, therefore, as showing the rapid development in the later years of this period.
TABLE 162.-Production of bituminous coal in Fayette and Westmoreland counties, Pennsylvania, 1890 to 1907.
[Compiled from Pennsylvania State Mining Reports.]
Tons of coke shipped.
8, 244, 438
5,411, 602 6,915,052 8,460, 112 10, 129, 764 10, 166, 234
12,609,949 14, 138, 740
12, 427, 468 17,896,526 19,999, 326 19,029, 058
The pioneer operatives in the coke industry were Americans, Irish' and Germans. There were a few English and Scotch, but their numbers before the civil war were almost negligible. When the industry began its rapid course of development in 1860, the first demand for increased labor was met by native Americans, and by Germans and Irish, but after the civil war the immigration of these two races, together with that of the English and Scotch, became relatively large. This was due entirely to the expansion of the coke
industry and the consequent demand for more labor. The immigration of the races from Great Britain and Germany brought sufficient labor to the district during the rapid development which took place up to 1879. Men of these races, together with native Americans, mined the coal, fired the ovens, and drew and loaded the coke. They were an intelligent, thrifty, and ambitious class of employees.
As shown by Table 161, page 256, the development which took place after the year 1879 was very extensive and rapid. The production for 1881 was practically treble the production for 1879. During a number of years there was an annual increase of approximately 1,000 ovens in operation with proportionate increase in production. Roughly speaking, one man must be employed for each oven burned. Consequently, in the early eighties there was a yearly demand in this district from the coke plants alone for 1,000 additional men. This is the development which brought the races from southern and eastern Europe. Some operators who, in the urgent demand for labor, had secured a few Slovaks and Poles from New York employment agencies, found that these races could be used in the unskilled occupations of the industry and promptly set about securing more of them. In 1882 some companies had agents in Europe soliciting and encouraging the immigration of Slovaks, Poles, and Bohemians. This was prior to the contract-labor law of 1885, and some immigrants may have been imported as contract laborers. At any rate, large numbers of these races were influenced to come to the Connellsville region and, after they had been given employment, were urged to induce their friends and relatives to join them. This programme of encouragement of immigration of these races, conducted not only by agents in Europe and in the Atlantic ports of the United States, but also by the immigrants themselves, who were promised work for their relatives, resulted in a great immigration of Slovaks, Poles, Magyars, Croatians, Bohemians, North and South Italians, and other southern and eastern European races.
As indicating how rapid this immigration actually was, a general statement of the racial classification of the workmen of one large mining and coke company in 1886 is of interest. This company, which may be called Plant A, in the year 1886 was employing about 3,500 men. Of this number 50 per cent were Slovaks, Poles, Magpars, and Bohemians, though the great majority were Slovaks and Poles; 10 per cent were Germans, and the remainder were Irish and Americans with a few English, Scotch, and Welsh. In this connection it is significant to remember that the immigration of the Poles, Slovaks, Magyars, and Bohemians in any considerable numbers had begun only in 1882, though a few had been employed some years before. Within the short period of four years after their arrival in the region, however, these races constituted one-half of the working force of the company under discussion.
Taking as a further illustration another plant, which may be designated as Plant B, in operation more than thirty years, it was found that the employees up to the year 1882 were Americans, Germans, and Irish, together with a very few English and Scotch. During the year 1882 the first Slovaks and Bohemians were employed; in 1883, the first Poles; in 1886, the first Magyars; in 1888, the first North and South Italians. As contrasted with 1882, a complete canvass of the employees of Plant B reveals a racial composition of the force employed at the present time as follows:
Table 163.-Racial composition of Plant B, by occupation, 1908.
Old immigrants and natives.
1 205 57
Another plant, which may be called C, and which has been operated for more than thirty years, had very much the same original force as Plant B-Germans, English, and Scotch. In 1885 the first Slovaks were employed, together with a few Bohemians; in 1886, the first Poles; in 1888, the first North and South Italians; in 1891, the first Magyars; in 1892, the first Croatians; in 1894, the first Ruthenians. The present racial classification of its employees will be found on the page following
TABLE 164.-Racial composition of Plant C, by occupation, 1908.
Old immigrants and
of mines operating.
1 6 12 10 11
As an illustration on a larger scale, the following has been the course of development and racial change in one particular portion of the coke region, which we may call District A. Mines were opened and operated as follows during the years specified:
12 152 7 4 16 1 48
of mines operating.
Not only did the number of mines increase, but the number of men employed also increased as the workings were extended. In addition to this development of the mining and coke industry, with its consequent demand for labor, two important manufacturing establishments were also opened in 1889 and 1890. This steady demand for