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History of immigration to the coal mines of the Southwest-Period of residence in the United States of foreign-born employees and members of their householdsRacial classification of employees at the present time-History of immigration to the Oklahoma coal fields-Racial movements to selected localities in OklahomaPresent racial classification of Oklahoma mine workers-Period of residence in the United States of foreign-born employees in Oklahoma-Future immigration to Oklahoma-History of immigration to the Kansas_mines-Racial movements to selected bituminous mining localities in Kansas-Racial classification of Kansas mine workers-Period of residence in the United States of foreign-born employees in Kansas-Future immigration to Kansas.-[Text Tables 389 to 396 and General Tables 153 and 154.]
HISTORY OF IMMIGRATION TO THE COAL MINES OF THE SOUTHWEST.
No satisfactory statistics for the coal industry in the Southwest prior to 1883 are available. The Arkansas, Kansas, and Indian Territory fields were not opened on any considerable scale until about the year 1885, and the annual production in Texas had not reached large proportions by 1890, the principal period of development in the latter State being as late as the five years 1902 to 1907.
Kansas took the lead in developing her coal deposits, and if Kansas and Oklahoma (then Indian Territory) be considered as representative of the Southwest, it may be said that coal mining by the year 1885 had reached an important stage of development. Four years later these two States were producing together about 3,000,000 short tons annually. This had increased in 1902 to more than 8,000,000 tons, and in 1907 to more than 11,000,000 tons. During the same period the number of men employed in the coal mines of Kansas and Oklahoma had increased as follows: "
The above data show that the development of mining in the two States led to the employment of almost 4,000 more men in 1902 as compared with 1889, and slightly over 9,000 more in 1907 than in 1902. The significant feature of the situation from the standpoint of immigration is that not only the original employees, but also the increased number due to the expansion of coal operations, were largely recruited from immigrant races entering the United States at the time of the opening of the mines, or from immigrants who had already settled in other mining sections of the United States.
a Compiled from reports of United States Census. -VOL 7-11-2
Both Kansas and Oklahoma were very sparsely inhabited about 1878, and the management of the properties induced Americans, English, Irish, Scotch, and Welsh to come from the coal regions of Pennsylvania to work in the mines. Mines had been developed in Oklahoma (then Indian Territory) as early as 1873, and a few immigrants were then employed, but the movement of immigrant races to these mines did not assume large proportions until the year 1880. After that year the older immigrants from Great Britain began to come to the Southwest in considerable numbers from Pennsylvania, the Middle West, and other coal fields of the country. The movement continued until the early nineties in Oklahoma (then Indian Territory), and until 1895 in Kansas, when the arrival of men of the races of northern Europe practically stopped. As early as 1880 Croatians, Germans, Poles, and Lithuanians were also in the field. They were induced to come from Pennsylvania in some cases, and in others were furnished transportation by agents of the coal companies at the Atlantic ports. The number of immigrants from southern and eastern Europe employed in the mines was small, however, until the early nineties, when they began to come of their own accord. After 1895 they entered the field in large numbers. The following table, classifying mine employees in Kansas and Oklahoma (Indian Territory) according to nativity indicates the presence of Italians, Poles, Russians, and other recent immigrants in considerable numbers. It also indicates the large proportion of immigrants from Great Britain employed in the
TABLE 389.-Number of miners and quarrymen in Kansas and Oklahoma (Indian Territory), by nativity, 1900.
[Compiled from United States Census of 1900: Occupations.]
PERIOD OF RESIDENCE IN THE UNITED STATES OF FOREIGN-BORN EMPLOYEES AND MEMBERS OF THEIR HOUSEHOLDS.
The following table, based upon reports from 4,089 foreign-born males in the bituminous coal-mining district of the Southwest shows, by general nativity and race, the period of residence in the United States of individual mine workers.
TABLE 390.-Per cent of foreign-born male employees in the United States each specified number of years, by race.
(STUDY OF EMPLOYEES.)
[By years in the United States is meant years since first arrival in the United States. No deduction is made for time spent abroad. This table includes only races with 40 or more males reporting. The total, however, is for all foreign-born.]
Of the 4,089 foreign-born male employees reporting complete data, it will be seen that nearly one-third, or 33.1 per cent, have been in the United States less than five years, and nearly two-thirds, or 63 per cent, less than ten years, while less than one-fifth, or 19 per cent, have been in the United States twenty years or over.
Perhaps the best method of discussing this table would be to separate the foreign-born races given into two groups; the first to be known as the older immigrants, including the English, Irish, Scotch, French, and Germans, and the second group to be known as the more recent immigrants-this last to include all other races reported in the above table except the Mexicans, who for obvious reasons should not be classified with either the recent or less recent immigrants of European origin.
It will be noted that, in the column showing the percentages of the various races with a residence of twenty years or over in the United States, the Scotch show nearly three-fourths, or 74.5 per cent, while the South Italians show only 5.6 per cent. These, of course, are the two extremes, the highest per cent of the older immigrants and the lowest per cent of the more recent immigrants. It might be well to mention, however, in this connection that a greater variance exists among the older than among the more recent immigrants; for, following the Scotch, are the Irish, with 69.6 per cent; English, 68.7 per cent;
German, 45.9 per cent; and French, with 29.2 per cent. Among the more recent immigrants the Russians show the largest proportion, or 14.2 per cent, in the United States twenty years or over, after which the percentage of the various races with this period of residence varies very little, ranging from 9.9 per cent of the Lithuanians to 5.6 per cent of the South Italians.
The Scotch and Magyars show the same proportion with a residence less than five years as they show with a residence of from five to nine years, while the Russians and Lithuanians show smaller percentages with a residence under five than from five to nine years. With these exceptions, all other races report a larger percentage of their number in the United States less than five years than is shown by the same races for a residence of from five to nine years; the largest gain being shown by the Slovaks, who report 43 per cent in the United States under five years, as compared with 27.3 per cent in the United States from five to nine years.
The proportions of the foreign-born males of the different races in the households studied who have been here less than five years, less than ten years, and less than twenty years, respectively, are shown in the following table, by race of individual.
TABLE 391.-Per cent of foreign-born persons in the United States each specified number of years, by race of individual.
(STUDY OF HOUSEHOLDS.)
[By years in the United States is meant years since first arrival in the United States. No deduction is made for time spent abroad. This table includes only races with 20 or more persons reporting. The total, however, is for all foreign-born.]
Data were secured from 1,118 foreign-born individuals. Of these over one-third, 36.4 per cent, have been in the United States less than five years, 65.2 per cent less than ten years, and 85.4 per cent less than twenty years.
The race having the largest proportion of men in the United States less than five years is the South Italian; that having the smallest proportion is the Mexican. The South Italians have the largest proportion of men in the United States less than ten years, and the Irish have the smallest. The entire number of Croatians reported have been in this country less than twenty years. The race having the smallest proportion of men here less than twenty years is the Irish.