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RACIAL MOVEMENTS TO SELECTED BITUMINOUS MINING LOCALITIES IN KANSAS.
For the same reason that the history of immigration to various coal-mining localities in Oklahoma is presented in detail, it is considered worth while to set forth in detail the history of immigration to and the present racial composition of several mining towns in Kansas. The detailed statement, by communities, follows:
Community No. 1 is located in the southeastern part of Crawford County on the main lines of two railroads making connections with other parts of the United States. The principal industry employing immigrants is coal mining. Immigration to the community began in 1878, when the first mines were opened in the vicinity, and it is estimated that, out of a present population of 15,964, the immigrants number 1,800. The racial composition is as follows:
At one time there were many more immigrants in the town than there are now, for the reason that during the last five years they have been moving out to the coal towns in the vicinity where they are nearer work. The probable future immigration to the community will be small, as the demand for labor is greater in the surrounding coal field than in the town proper.
Community No. 2 is 5 miles northeast of Community No. 1, in Crawford County. The town has a population of 2,790, and according to careful estimate 2,140 are foreign-born, of the following races:
The Germans, Croatians, Poles, English, French, and Irish first came to the community in the year 1884 from neighboring coal camps. In 1886 an agent for one of the mining companies brought in 10 Italians from Spring Valley, Illinois, and during the next four or five years this same agent continued to import men of this race from other coal fields in the country. This started immigration of Italians, and they have come steadily since 1886. The future immigration to the community will probably be large, as new mines are projected in the vicinity.
Community No. 3 is in the north-central part of Cherokee County, 16 miles south of Community No. 1. The first mines were opened here in 1879 and in that year the first immigrants came into the field. These were English, Irish, Scotch, and Welsh. They settled in the community and since that year the above races have continued
to arrive. The present population is 2,373. It is estimated that of this number 1,200 are English, Irish, Scotch, and Welsh, with about 300 immigrants of other races of recent arrival in the country.
Community No. 4 is in the northern part of Cherokee County, 12 miles south of Community No. 1. Immigrants began to arrive in 1880 when mines were first opened. These immigrants were English, Irish, Scotch, and Welsh, and came of their own accord from mines in the vicinity. During the latter part of the same year a few French came. In 1881 there was a strike, and Italians were brought from Illinois as strike breakers, and in 1882 Croatians and Germans came in of their own volition from other towns in the vicinity. The foreign population of the community has fluctuated from time to time, because many immigrants leave when work is slack and others come in when work is steady. At the present time the population of the town is estimated to be 2,500, divided by races as follows:
Community No. 5 is in Cherokee County and 18 miles southwest of Community No. 1. The town was founded in 1897, and during this year immigrants made their appearance. The first foreigners to come were French, Croatians, and Poles. The same year Irish came from neighboring towns, and in 1901 the first Italians were shipped in by the coal operators. The present population, estimated to be 1,800, is divided by races as follows:
In the investigation of individual employees made in Kansas, data were secured from 873 mine workers native-born of native father, 509 native-born of foreign father, and 2,305 foreign-born. The racial composition of the three classes is given on the following page.
TABLE 395.-Total number of male employees for whom information was secured in the Kansas coal fields, by general nativity and race.
One interesting fact developed by the above table is the large number of second-generation English, Scotch, Irish, Germans, and French employed in the mines as well as the large number of foreignborn representatives of the same races. Of the more recent immigrants the North and South Italians combined furnish the largest proportion.
PERIOD OF RESIDENCE IN THE UNITED STATES OF FOREIGN-BORN EMPLOYEES IN KANSAS.
As regards the length of time foreign-born mine workers have been employed, no definite information is at hand, but the period of residence in the United States reported by the various miners corroborates the history of immigration to the field. Out of a total of 2,273 mine employees reporting years of residence in the United States, 734, or about one-third, have been in the country less than five years. This number is largely made up of North and South Italians, Austrians (race not specified), Slovenians, French, and Poles, which races, especially the Italians, obviously constitute the most recent additions to the operating force. It is also clear that the new immigrant is put to work in the mines practically as soon as he arrives in the country, as shown by the fact that of the total number reporting, 86 had been in the United States less than one year, 68 one year, 160 two, 187 three, and 233 four years. The table showing period of residence of Kansas employees, by general nativity and race, is given on the page following.
TABLE 396.-Number of foreign-born male employees in the Kansas coal fields who have been 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.]
In Kansas, as in Oklahoma, native mine labor is scarce, and it is upon the recent immigrant that coal operators will be dependent in supplying the increasing demand as new properties are developed. Immigration on the part of the English-speaking races and the French has been on the decline for a number of years, and at the present time there are fewer representatives of these races at work than there were four or five years ago. The universal opinion is that future immigration on the part of these races will be very small. Italians, Poles, Slovaks, Croatians, and other races represented in this field are still arriving, though not in as large numbers as formerly. This is accounted for by the fact that there has been no rapid development of coal properties during the past few years. Immigration on the part of the races mentioned will doubtless be steady, as members of each race are firmly established in Kansas and these permanent residents will do much toward influencing future immigration. Though the past two years have been dull ones in the coal trade of Kansas and Oklahoma on account of mild winters and the increasing use of oil and natural gas as fuel, the number of men employed has increased as follows: In 1907 there were 12,439 men employed in the mines of Kansas, and in 1908 there were 13,916, showing an increase of 1,477. During the same years in Oklahoma the increase was 353. With the return of normal conditions the steady immigration to the coal fields of the races mentioned above may be expected.