review by Jack P. Wise B.S., M.S.
"... A comparison comes immediately to mind: The Grapes of Wrath of the coal mines..."

Social activist’s daughter bares a shocking piece of America’s history with fast paced dramatic action set in the 1927 coal fields north of Pittsburgh during a strike called by John L. Lewis. Miners refuse to work. Coal and Iron Police seize their property, evict them from their homes, and impose unconstitutional restrictions—beatings, rape, and murder! The families are left with nothing. Solidarity is survival. Finally, the story is told! 

During the coal strike of 1927, the coalfields of western Pennsylvania become a hotbed of tension and terror. A mine mechanic and World War I hero, Ragman walks away from his job at the Russellton Mine. He originally wants no part of the union fight, but is slowly drawn in by his activist brothers.

When a new unit of special Coal and Iron Police arrives in Russellton to terrorize the town and end the strike, Ragman scarcely realizes that the commander, Herman Bucholtz, has his own agenda. Appointed by the governor to break the strike and evict the miners from their homes, he imposes unconstitutional restrictions to keep out relief workers and organizers.

Thus begins an intricate, emotional tangle that leads Ragman and his fellow activists on an escalating, fanatical path of revenge and self-discovery, culminating in a life-and-death struggle.

Miner Injustice The Ragman’s War, is a heartrending historic novel set during the 1927-1928 strike in the coalfields north of Pittsburgh.  Meticulously researched, the narrative shows the exploitation and abuses committed against immigrant workers enslaved in the same serfdom they tried to escape. Through the use of actual news articles, Miner Injustice illustrates that slave wages kept profits high and stocks soaring. Because the economy ran on coal, the industrialist controlled government suppressed information about the maltreatment to maintain status quo. A federal investigation of the conditions during the strike led to the draft of the most important labor legislation in history –The National Industrial Recovery Act and the National Industrial Relations Act (Wagner Act).

 Miner Injustice is awarded an Editor’s Choice by iUniverse.  Previously published under the title Bucket of Blood, The Ragman’s War, the story won honorable mention in the 2004 DYI Book Festival. The events in Miner Injustice are based on family stories, letters, and news articles, are a part of the author’s history and heritage.


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