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December 6, 1902


JAMA. 1902;XXXIX(23):1460-1461. doi:10.1001/jama.1902.02480490032004

A number of statements recently made in regard to the unhealthfulness of the miners' occupation suggest a reference to the authoritative utterances on the subject and to statistics. These do not exactly confirm the statements that have been made, and may be a surprise to some who have not investigated the matter. Naturally one would not expect the business of a coal miner to be an especially healthful one; the darkness in which he labors, the frequently constrained and unnatural posture, the dust, the gases and supposedly imperfect ventilation, the fumes of explosives, the dampness, etc., all readily suggest themselves as probable causes of physical deterioration and mortality. In old times the physical strain caused by climbing almost interminable ladders was also a matter to be considered. These factors leave altogether out of account the accidents to which the miner is exposed. It is not surprising, therefore, to most people