Jacob Lamp

The mine wars began in southern West Virginia from 1912-1921. It was a very horrific part of our history where miners were beaten, illegally court-martialed, deported from the state, and even killed. But the miners didn’t take this abuse lying down which resulted in several battles insuring ending in the miner’s march on Blair mountain(1921)  which resulted in the UMWA(United Mine Workers of America) collapsing in southern West Virginia. Of course, this isn’t the whole story but some might be fooled into thinking it was the whole story and that’s why.

I think that the mine wars should be put back in our education system because it was taken out of the system to make sure that VW’s name would not be tarnished but this decision might have ended up having the opposite effect on our state’s name now we are just known as victims who just get shoved around and never fight back but not just this it is also an important part of our history and should not be forgotten,It also has ties to events going on in modern times, and has a way to break apart one of West Virginias well know stereotypes

By putting the mine wars back in our education system it will not only give students the opportunity to learn about such a fascinating topic it might just even erase some stereotypes of our state. For instance, I feel as though we are always depicted as victims always getting pushed around and who wants to be known as that no we should be known as brave people who stand up to injustice.

It’s such a good time to re-introduce this subject to the youth of today because of some recent events going on in West Virginia today. The events I’m referring to is the teachers strike now you may be asking yourself “what does the teachers strike have to do with the mine wars” well I’m glad you asked because I have gotten several reports of teachers on strike wearing red bandanas which in case you didn’t know is the same same thing the miners did during the mine wars and this is where the term “redneck” originated from.Now I know what your thinking “so what who cares where redneck came from” well I believe that redneck is a false stereotype of our state and we need to address this issue and what better way to do it than to put the mine wars back in our education system and introduce this to our youth so that not only the meaning of redneck and the mine wars to other states so that maybe they will understand our history a little better.

This is why I think the mine wars should be put back in our education system I hope you see my point of view and that this might convince you to change things. So the youth can know the full story and the more we try to wash away the past like this the more likely it is for us to make the same mistakes we made back then.