Painesdale contributes to miner’s strike history

PAINESDALE – The village of Calumet and the surrounding area are often mentioned in discussions of the 1913-14 copper strike because of all the activity there, but other communities, including Painesdale, had similar activities, and that will be the focus of a centennial commemoration on Sept. 21.

The event is being conducted by Painesdale Mine & Shaft Inc., which the group’s treasurer, Anton Pintar, said is a nonprofit organization created in 1996.

“Our basic objective is to preserve the No. 4 shaft house,” he said.

Pintar said the group is also working to preserve other buildings owned by the Copper Range Mining Company and to preserve the history of the Painesdale area.

The program begins at 11 a.m. Sept. 21 at the Albert Paine Memorial United Methodist Church at 54385 Iroquois St. in Painesdale, Pintar said. It should be completed by 12:30 p.m. There will be comments by State Rep. Scott Dianda, D-Calumet, and local historian Gary Kaunonen. There will be tours of some of the buildings, including the No. 4 shaft house.

Pintar said although there were many actions by striking miners in the Calumet area, there were similar actions in Painesdale and surrounding area. The other Copper Range mining towns near Painesdale were Atlantic Mine, Baltic, South Range and Trimountain.

“Painesdale was heavily involved,” he said. “Every day the (Western Federation of Miners) would have a procession from Painesdale to Baltic.”

As in Calumet, Pintar said there was strike-related violence in Painesdale.

Two of the more famous incidents were the Seebervile Murders and the Dally-Jane Murders, which happened before the Italian Hall tragedy in Calumet.

Pintar said it’s hoped descendants of people involved with the strike will attend the commemoration.

“We’re going to ask for testimonials,” he said.