COAL CREEK SCHOLARS'
RESEARCH PROJECT

ASSIST IN RESEARCHING
AREA NEWSPAPERS
PUBLISHED AT THE TIME OF
THE COAL CREEK WAR
AND THE HANGING OF
MINER DICK DRUMMOND

3 November 2012


 

Neither the miners of Coal Creek nor representatives of the State of Tennessee signed a formal peace treaty in the summer of 1893 when hostilities ended during the Coal Creek War.  Now we know why.

Coal Creek Scholar, Chad Whitaker, is assisting Fred Brown and historians from the East Tennessee History Center in researching the topic. From archives at The East Tennessee Historical Society, they found that miner Dick Drummond was lynched on 10 August 1893.  Sixteen officers and enlisted men of the Tennessee National Guard were arrested for the crime.  The county jail in Clinton lacked the facilities to hold them, so they were transferred to the jail in Knoxville. 

The ensuing trial lasted several weeks.  Tennessee Governor Peter Turney feared that the spectacle would incite the miners to renew hostilities that had ended the previous summer when the town of Coal Creek was put under martial law.  To diffuse the situation, he closed Fort Anderson and withdrew the Tennessee National Guard from Coal Creek.

You’ll have to read Fred’s new book about Coal Creek, its mines and people, for the entire story.  We’ll offer a preview of the story on Friday, 17 May 2013, during the dedication ceremony to commemorate the listing of Fort Anderson on the National Register of Historic Places as described at http://www.coalcreekaml.com/FortAndersonDedication.htm.


Freshman Chad Whitaker and his grandfather
Bobby Carroll review old newspapers
on microfilm to assist in research for
Fred Brown's book on the Coal Creek History


We were honored to have assistance
from Dr. George Schweitzer who not only
is an
Alumni Distinguished Service Professor of
Inorganic Chemistry from the University of Tennessee,
but also an expert in
Genealogical Sources and research.
(Carol Moore with Dr. Schweitzer)


L to R:  Writer/Author Fred Brown, Bobby Carroll, Chad Whitaker,
Dr. George Schweitzer, Carol Moore, Barry Thacker PE, &
Cherel Henderson -- Executive Director of the East Tennessee Historical Society
Painting in the background is by artist Catherine Wiley, who
was born in Coal Creek.

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