James While Jr.
Notes from Bob Leathers
from Bob Leathers
1885 November: James While Jr. was born in Netherton, Dudley, England. He was the son of James "Jim" and Emma (Lord) While.
1885: James "Jim" While, age 21 and Emma (Lord) While, age 23, immigrated to the United States, going directly to Carbon Wyoming to work in the coal mines. James and Emma were recruited to the Carbon by Richard and Elizabeth Cox and their son Joseph "Joe" Cox. Jim went to work in the Carbon coal mines. He worked in the Carbon No. 2 and Carbon No. 6 Mines during his time living in Carbon.
1900: James "Jim" While, age 40 a laborer in the coal mine and his wife Emma, age 38, were living in Hanna Wyoming in house #270. They had been married for 20 years. They had five children living with them: James While, age 14, single; Lizzie While. age 11; Samuel While, age 6; Joseph While, age 3 and Baby [Enock] age 2 months. (1900 U.S. Census)
1903 March 30: James While Jr., age 18, along with his father James "Jim" While and his uncle Jobe "Job" While were killed in the Explosion of the Union Pacific Coal Company's No. 1 Mine in Hanna. All three were buried together in the Carbon, Wyoming Cemetery.
James While, Jr., age 18, a miner from England, not married, killed in the June 30, 1903 explosion of the Union Pacific Coal Company's No. 1 mine in Hanna. He was found at entry 20, identified and removed from the mine on July 23, 1903, day 24 after the explosion. James was a Mule Driver in the mine. His job was to bring the coal to the slope by mule power. It was reported that the force of the explosion knocked James and his coal trip into splinters. It drove the pit cars and the mule attached to the cars down the manway about fifteen to twenty feet. James, his mule and the trip of pit cars were found at the edge of the manway. The force of the explosion completely disrobed him of every stitch of clothing and left him completely nude and mangled. James Jr. was buried with his father James Sr. and his uncle Job in Plot 109 in the Carbon, Wyoming, cemetery. (THE HANNA MINER: At the Bottom of the Mine, Bob Leathers)
1983 October 19: An article from the Hanna Herald by Muriel Kitching reported: Robert and Elsie While of Laramie sent their contribution (for the Miners Memorial to be located at the Hanna Cemetery) in memory of Bob's two uncles, Job While and James While and a cousin, James Henry While, all of whom were killed in the 1903 explosion.