Golden, CO Malachite Mine Accident, Mar 1878

Fatal Accident.

Death of Charles Rolph at the Malachite Mine.

The death of Charles Rolph, well known in Central, at the Malachite mine, Golden, was mentioned in the Call some few days ago. The following testimony, explanatory of the accident, was taken at the coroner’s inquest and published in the Globe:

Patrick S Ryan, on oath said:
“This is the State of Colorado, don’t know the county. I know this man lying here dead to be Charles Rolph. He cane to his death by falling rock in the tunnel of the Malachite company, between 1 and 2 o’clock on Thursday afternoon of the 14th inst, We went into the mine between 1 and 2 o‘clock; he sat down to take a smoke; I went in and went to work. I worked about twenty minutes when he got up and relieved me; told me to go back and he would work on a while. I was sitting down about two minutes, and I turned and looked in where he was working. I saw him running toward me, and then when he came within about two feet from where I was sitting, the dirt fell on him, and he fell on his face and hands. I started to run out of the tunnel and my light went out by force of my running. I turned back and lit my light. I had run about thirty feet before I turned back, and then went out of the tunnel and informed Charles Chapman and William Russell that Charles Rolph was killed by caving in of the tunnel. Myself, Charles Chapman and William Russell then went back into the tunnel; we went to work to get him out; Harry Mullen, May Doyle and myself began throwing the rocks off him; the first thing we saw of him was his head; we got off his head and body about 800 or 400 pounds of dirt and rock; when taken out we found him to be dead. There was a hole under his ear and a cut on his back. His back and one of his legs seemed to be broken. The rocks which were removed would weigh 200 pounds. He had a light in his hat when he started to run, but the falling rock knocked it out, and I believe the falling rock caused his death. I have been a miner for nine years, and have worked in Eastern mines. My opinion was that the tunnel was safe, and I believe the company did all that was necessary as regards the safety of the tunnel. This tunnel was run in about 500 feet. The deceased and I were working as partners under contract with the Malachite mining company.

The Evening Call, Central City, Co 19 Mar 1878