My interest in the Union Mining Company is that my great
grandfather worked there when he came to the USA in 1857 from Wales. I
wanted to see what it looked like. Your web site told me about it and
showed me pictures of what it looked like. That is exactly what I was
hoping to find.
The Union Mining Co. presented my great grandfather Phillip Thomas, a gold watch in recognition of his "Humanity and Courage In Saving the Life of a Mate At the Risk of His Own" June 15, 1874.
He saved the life of Michael Dickel, but he also tried to rescue his son-in-law, John Hoskin only survived for about an hour and then he died.
June 20, 1874 FATAL OCCURRENCE: At the underground works of the Fire Brick Company, at Mt. Savage, Tuesday last, it became necessary, in order to open communication between the shaft and gallery, to blast with a large charge of powder. This was done when Mr. Michael Dickel descended the shaft to inspect the result. The smoke not having risen as quickly as expected, this gentleman was overcome by bad air and fell to the bottom. The bucket was immediately drawn up, when Mr. John Hoskin went down to the assistance of Mr. Dickel. He also became suffocated and fell from the bucket. After some delay both men were brought to the surface, and strenuous efforts made to resuscitate them. These endeavors were successful with Mr. Dickel, who is now recovering, but Mr. Hoskin died a few hours later. He was a good citizen, and his sudden and melancholy death is a subject of profound regret to all who knew him, and a deep distress to his wife and three children.
July 11, 1874 A VALUABLE TESTIMONIAL: The recent accident in
the clay mine of Mt. Savage Fire Brick Works by which John Hoskin lost his life,
became the occasion last week of a generous testimonial from the Union Mining
Company to Mr. Phillip P. Thomas, through whose heroic efforts the two bodies
were brought to the surface and the life of Michael Dickel was saved. The fact
coming to the knowledge of the Directors they at once commissioned the
President, James S. Mackie, Esq., to present Mr. Thomas with an elegant gold
watch, which he did through J. A. Milholland Esq., of Mt. Savage. The case of
the watch bears, outside, the initials, "P.P.T." inside, the inscription: "The
Union Mining Company of Maryland to Philip P. Thomas, In Recognition of His
Humanity and Courage In Saving the Life of a Mate At the Risk of His Own, June
15, 1874 By order of The Board of Directors, New York, June 24, 1874"
Accompanying the watch, a letter from Mr. Mackie conveys to Mr. Thomas, in
feeling terms, the high appreciation with which his brave conduct is held by the
Company - of itself sufficient to inspire with just pride any man worthy of such
commendation. The whole preceding is creditable alike to Mr. Thomas' brave
conduct and the Company's generous recognition of his manhood. Philip died 15
Mar 1885. Transcribed and submitted by Lois Hopkins