Preface


This commercial website is an extension of my master's thesis.    

Purpose of Study
This web site was developed in partial fulfillment for the requirements of a masterís degree in history from Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania. The study covers the period from 1910, when the town of McIntyre, Pennsylvania, was founded to 1947,
when it was sold by the Rochester and Pittsburgh Company along with sixteen other remaining Company towns and their water rights to a local salvage company for the sum of $890,000. It is hoped that this assemblage of documents, memories, and information will convey a taste of the everyday life of the town and its residents during the first half of the 20th century. 

Brief Background of McIntyre
McIntyre, Pennsylvania, was one of a number of coal mining company towns developed by the Rochester and Pittsburgh Coal Company in Indiana County, western Pennsylvania, in the early part of the 20th century. During this period the United States was becoming a major industrial and world power due in part to the presence and mining of coal and other abundant natural resources in the country. Coal was used to produce coke for the steel industry, to heat homes, to run railroads, and as fuel for many industries. Many unskilled European immigrants, wanting to leave behind a life of poverty that promised little or no chance of upward mobility, were attracted to jobs in the mines and settled with their families in a number of western Pennsylvania towns. McIntyre is representative of the many coal mining company towns that flourished in western Pennsylvania during this period.
The patterns of daily life found in McIntyre could easily be superimposed over other  mining towns and, although it would not be an identical match, there would be many similarities. 

McIntyre Today
Although McIntyre still stands today, it is much changed. The coal tipple and railroad tracks are gone; the company store, although still standing, is now privately owned; the four room schoolhouse, once so prominent on top of a hill, is gone; company-sponsored baseball teams are nonexistent. The immigrants who worked in the mines and were primarily from southern and eastern Europe are long deceased. However, a number of their children, now in their 70s, 80s and 90s, continue to live in or near the town. As these individuals die, much of the rich and ethnically diverse cultural and social history of the town during the early part of the 20th century will be forgotten, unless preserved. As is true of many coal mining towns, there is no written history of McIntyre.  

Information Sources for Study
Information for this study was gathered from a number of different sources including newspapers, the Indiana County Historical Society, and the Indiana Court House. In addition, the Rochester and Pittsburgh Coal Company Records and the United Mine Workers of America District 2 papers in the Archives Department of Indiana University of Pennsylvania were also used. A number of books proved to be valuable and are included in the bibliography. The greatest source of information, however, was the collective memories of older McIntyre natives whose vivid remembrances illuminate the history of the town. 

Web Accessibility
Every attempt has been made to enable users of either Internet Explorer or Netscape to optimally view the site. Some of the images are fuzzy and unfortunately could not be made any clearer due to their age, fragility, or type. Other images are large and could not be made smaller without compromising their quality. 

As of February 2007, all the related external Web sites found on this electronic publication were working. Because of the dynamic nature of the Internet, however, there is no guarantee that they will be working a year, or even a month, from today although care was taken in selecting web sites that appeared to be stable. The purpose of these many related Web sites is to illuminate certain aspects of the lives of the townspeople and to place these aspects within a broader historical context. For example, a resident in the "Memories" section remembers the flu that was widespread in McIntyre in the early part of the 20th century. A related link connects the user to a website on the great flu pandemic of 1918. 

Design of the Web Site
The colors selected for this electronic publication are somewhat somber in tone. This was done intentionally for two reasons. I did not want the colors or design of the web site to detract from the richness of information contained within it.  Secondly, the chosen colors are symbolic of not only McIntyre but other coal towns as well. The black represents the coal, ever present in the lives of the miners, their families, and towns. The dark red is symbolic of the blood and sweat of the miners. Many worked in the coal fields more than half their lives, where danger from cave-ins and explosions was an everyday possibility. The green represents the untold wealth made by coal companies through ownership of not only the mines, but also of the company stores and houses lived in by the miners.  

Arrangement of Web Site
This web site is divided into several sections that may be viewed either in sequence or any order. They are: Preface, Young Township, The Coal Company, and McIntyre. The McIntyre section is further subdivided into additional parts. These include Historical Overview/Town Structures, Miners and Mining, The Union, Family and Town Life, School and Education, Church and Religion, and  Leisure and Recreation. Links to photos, documents, eloquent memories of current and former McIntyre residents, and related web sites are found on these pages. This section also contains a link to McIntyre surnames, as well as the bibliography. 

Author Information
The author recently retired as an assistant professor in the library department at Slippery Rock University, Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania. She has a master's degree in library and information science and a master's in history. 

Dedication
This web site is dedicated to my mother,  and to the memory of my grandparents both of whom immigrated from Italy in the early part of the 20th century to McIntyre, Pennsylvania, where they raised eight children. 

Thanks
I would like to acknowledge the following people for their support and help: William Davis, Helen Piscevich Morgan, Ed Setlock family, Ed Swan, Kevin Trenney, and Stan Wass. Thanks also to Eileen Mountjoy-Cooper, former archivist in the Archives Department, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, the Indiana Court House, the Indiana County Historical Society, the Indiana Gazette, and the Butler Eagle. A special thanks to those who shared photos, documents, and eloquent memories of themselves, their families, and of McIntyre, Pennsylvania.


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Copyright Susan Ferrandiz, 2001
PAcoaltown@yahoo.com