SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — There's little left of Dawson except for building foundations and a dusty cemetery, but the former mining town in northeastern New Mexico lives on in history books.
Tuesday marks the 100th anniversary of the Dawson coal mine disaster in which the Mine Safety and Health Administration says 263 miners were killed Oct. 22, 1913.
The tragedy made Dawson, located northeast of Cimarron in Colfax County, the site of the second-highest death toll in a U.S. coal mine accident.
The state mine inspector blamed coal dust for the blast that sent flames 100 feet out of the mine's entrance, the Santa Fe New Mexican (http://bit.ly/HbwTEc ) reported.
Rescue teams who entered the mine told grisly tales.
"One man, unidentified, was found leaning against a wall with both hands elevated to his face, as though he was striving to ward off a sudden and unexpected blow," reported the Albuquerque Morning Democrat. "Another was found standing erect with his pick still in his hand, just as he had struck his last flow into the coal."
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