In October 22, 1913, an incorrectly set dynamite charge resulted in an enourous explosion in Stag Canon Mine No.2 that sent a tongue of fire one hundred feet out of the tunnel mouth. Rescue efforts were well organized and exhaustive, but only few miners could be rescued. 263 died in one of the worst mining disasters in the history of the United States.
Almost ten years later, a mine train jumped its track, and ignited coal dust in the mine. Although it was not the same shaft as before, the effect was horrifyingly similar. Many women who lost husbands in the earlier disaster waited anxiously for their sons to appear out of the smoke. But 122 more men perished in February of 1923, and the crosses in the special section then numbered 385.