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Russell Lee: Coal Communities

ByRussell LeePatrick Wang

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In March 1946, after years of deteriorating working conditions, no pay increases, and elevated work loads sparked by war but not alleviated by the end of war, the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) union went on strike. Led by John L. Lewis, the UMWA eventually came to a settlement with the Truman administration, represented by Secretary of the Interior Julius Krug, to end the strike with the Lewis-Krug Agreement in May 1946. Part of the agreement required the government to undertake “a comprehensive survey and study of the hospital and medical facilities, medical treatment, sanitary, and housing conditions in the coal mining areas.” Russell Lee (1903-1986), veteran of many government projects—most recently having served as a photographer with the Air Transport Command during World War II—was selected to photograph the project. From June through October 1946, he shot 4,100 negatives, and about 200 of his photographs were used throughout the final report, “A Medical Survey of the Bituminous-Coal Industry,” and its supplement, “The Coal Miner and His Family.” This book presents 304 images, over half of which have never been published. Text excerpts are from the supplement written by Allan Sherman.

Details

Publication Date
Oct 17, 2022
Language
English
ISBN
9781958525043
Category
Art & Photography
Copyright
All Rights Reserved - Standard Copyright License
Contributors
By (photographer): Russell Lee, Edited by: Patrick Wang

Specifications

Pages
328
Binding
Hardcover
Interior Color
Black & White
Dimensions
US Letter Landscape (11 x 8.5 in / 279 x 216 mm)

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