No Christmas tree was ever again allowed in Mary Krainatz’s Upper Peninsula home.
The sight of a decorated fir tree, resplendent with colorful ornaments, yuletide cheers and the gaiety of children, reminded her of a Christmas Eve she longed to forget.
Seventy-three people, the majority of them children younger than 10, died in a stampede after someone supposedly yelled “fire” during a holiday get-together for striking miners in Calumet on Dec. 24, 1913. Krainatz’s 11-year-old daughter, also named, Mary, was among those killed when people rushed for the staircase down to the first floor.
Today is the 100th anniversary of the tragedy, a time of remembrance in a small Copper Country community where no survivors remain to share their firsthand accounts.
A ceremony, including a reading of the names of the deceased, will be held at 3:30 p.m. at the site of where the Italian Hall once stood at Seventh and Elm. Now, a park is punctuated by the sandstone block archway that once served as the building’s entrance. A white, silk lily for each victim pays silent testament in Calumet’s Village Hall.
The pre-holiday horror was immortalized in the Woody Guthrie song “1913 Massacre,” a 2001 opera, a book by Birmingham lawyer Steve Lehto and the documentary “Red Metal: The Copper Country Strike of 1913” that debuted on PBS earlier this month. — Source
This posting is dedicated to the 73 people who lost their lives on December 24, 1913 in Calumet, Michigan. May they rest in peace.
May this be a reminder to all my Conservative and Tea Party friends that dishonest, crony capitalism hurts people; this being a perfect example.