Memorial installed to honor more than 60 miners that died in 1917 explosion


CLAY, Ky. (WEHT) – A Webster County town unveiled a new historic site on Friday.

Right outside of Clay, more than 60 men died in a mining explosion in 1917.

With help from the Webster County Historical Society, a permanent reminder has gone up.

Clay is in the middle of its yearly festival and those joining the fun downtown will see the new memorial meant to remember those who lost their lives in the accident more than 100 years ago.

The incident happened on August 14, 1917.

It’s a day many in the City of Clay have heard about all their lives.

Until now, there was no permanent place for people to remember the tragedy.

For families like that of Rene Williams, the unveiling hits close to home.

Williams’ great uncle played a part in the rescue.

“There were people when I was growing up that had relatives that died in the mining explosion,” Williams said. “It’s a great monument to those early coal miners that really suffered, really worked hard and suffered.”

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(This story was originally published on October 4, 2019)

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