Mining Tragedy Remembered

JENKINS TOWNSHIP — Tuesday marks a grim milestone in Luzerne County: the worst mining disaster in the Wyoming Valley that hit almost 54 years ago.

About a dozen people stopped by the memorial Sunday knox mine plaqueto honor the victims of the Knox Mine disaster. The memorial is along the Susquehanna River near Pittston.

It was on January 22, 1959 when the Susquehanna River broke through the wall of the shaft and flooded the mine.

It was a disaster one history buff believes never should have happened.

“This disaster would not have happened if they were not mining underneath the river in an illegal area, where they actually went off the mine maps,” said Carl Orechovsky of Old Forge.

Twelve men died in the flooding and 69 people were saved during the disaster.