Coeur D'alene Riots

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COEUR D'ALENE RIOTS, in the lead and silver mines of northern Idaho, erupted throughout the 1890s, beginning in 1892. Relations between mine owners and mine workers had become increasingly hostile, due to mine owners' indifference to the extreme danger and poor working conditions the miners endured. In 1892, miners struck for union recognition. The mine owners responded with armed guards and nonunion workers, and to quell the resulting melee, Governor Frank Steunenberg sent in state and federal troops. The defeat of the strikers marked a larger pattern in America: political power was shifting from the local to the state level, and corporations increasingly drew on state troops to crush labor unrest.


Hart, Patricia, and Ivar Nelson. Mining Town: The Photographic Record of T.N. Barnard and Nellie Stockbridge from the Coeur d'Alenes. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1984.

Lukas, Anthony J. Big Trouble: Murder in a Small Western Town Sets Off a Struggle for the Soul of America. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1997.

Stoll, William T. Silver Strike: The True Story of Silver Mining in the Coeur d'Alenes. Moscow: University of Idaho Press, 1991.

Cornelius JamesBrosnan


See alsoInjunctions, Labor ; Lead Industry ; Mining Towns ; Silver Prospecting and Mining ; Strikes ; Western Federation of Miners .