Programs to honor Mother Jones, miners

Programs to honor Mother Jones, miners

MT. OLIVE (Oct. 12, 2017) – Two programs that celebrate Miners’ Day and Mother Jones will be presented Sunday, Oct. 15, at Union Miners Cemetery in Mt. Olive.

At noon, the Springfield-based Mother Jones Foundation will present their annual tribute to the Battle of Virden and its part in local labor history with labor songs and speakers to recognize the struggles of miners to form unions. Foundation President Jack Dyer will speak, along with United Mine Workers of America officials, Secretary/Treasurer Levi Allen and District 12 President Steve Earl. Traditional labor songs will be part of the program, as well as personal stories from anyone who wishes to speak.

Immediately following the Foundation program will be a Union Miners Cemetery Walk. John Alexander, labor historian and expert on the Battle of Virden, will explain how Miners’ Day originated. Mother Jones and “General” Alexander Bradley impersonators will speak, along with members of local families who will tell the stories of an Italian immigrant coal mining family, a contemporary labor organizer, and a Mt. Olive World War I soldier who died in that war. Labor songs will accompany the program.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, visit facebook.com/motherjonesfoundation.org or facebook.com/events/1237412586387775.