Carbondale, PA Coal Mine Cave In, Jan 1846


An appalling casualty occurred at the Coal mines, in Carbondale, Pennsylvania, on the 12th inst. by which some fiftyy or sixty persons were literally buried alive, of whom it is supposed that fifteen have lost their lives. The accident consisted in the falling in of a number of acres of the roof of the mines, which happened at about ten o'clock in the morning, while the hands were at work.
Among those buried in the ruins was MR. JOHN HOSIE, one of the overseers, who was rescued on the third day after the occurrence. From the New York Courier we learn that at the time of the crash he was in the second of the three parallel mines or roads, nearly a mile from its mouth, and at some distance from the shaft by which the mine was ventilated. At the instant of the crash all the lights in the mine were extinguished, including that of the lamp which he held in his hand; and he thus found himself suddenly enveloped in darkness. He first attempted to dig a passage into the adjoining chamber, which after a long time he effected, but found the entrance barred. He returned to his first position, and then went back to the rear, or headings of the second chambert; but finding there no possibility of escape, he again returned and saw a light in the thhird chamber, towards which he directed his steps. On his way, amid the utter darkness of the subterranean passage, he stumbled over a car and lay for some trime stunned by his fall. On recovering the light had disappeared, and he resumed his wandering in the darkness.
Finding, however, no way of escape, he returned to his first position, where he remained until the next morning, when he perceived another light, and on calling for aid was finally taken out by an assistant overseer and two men, who were searching for him and others.
MR. HOSIE'S escape is certainly remarkable; and from his success, and the fact that he remained there from Monday morning, the time of the accident, until Wednesday, when he was released, it is supposed that others may still be immersed in these underground passages. In the mines there are about thirty miles of railroad, so that there is wide space for wandering in the dreary darkness of the place. Only fourteen persons are still missing. A boy was taken out, but died soon after. Some fifty or sixty persons were in the mine at the time.

Adams Sentinel Gettysburg Pennsylvania 1846-01-26