Archive Record

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Catalog Number 1995.033.0006
Object Name Tape, Cassette
Scope & Content Interview with Sam Jones Sr.

Sam Jones, Sr. speaks about Far Hill #9., "Boots" Alower talked about tunnel work, spoke about Tom Pritchard who was killed at the # 15 quarry and of John Whinney.

Three minutes in he started giving a description on "Riggering" Which included:
Electric work, the slate stick, Hughes Quarries in Salem, Norton Brothers Quarry, O' Briend Brothers Quarry, Vermont Structural Slate and Petro. He owned a business after 1945.

Tom Barrington was also a rigger. One of the tools used for rigging was a tackle block to pull the pole up-said at eight minutes in. He then began to talk about Tom L. Jones and his "close calls" Jones had been fixing ropes and ended up getting his legs locked on the carriage.
Insurence-some companies. "Rigging" paid most of the money.
$30 per week, got $40.
185 ft - lgst stick-Q #16
Brother Burton Jones

Then he beagn talking about "selecting sticks. Its a 60-day process, 9 hours per day.

At thirteen minutes he spoke about his leisure time, childhood, marriage, family and humor (lack of).

He also talked about replacing sticks and the use of dimensions. He also told of a story about TATKO-2pc stick. and "walking" a stick.

He also talked about Herb Hammon and Harl Lincoln who were teamsters.

He spoke about moving cables and sticks. Also of the lifespan of Carriages-hooker, ruggles and Owen Jones. He also spoke about John Red Zayachek, when he worked, began Nortan brothers, was at sheldon slate, 40 year quarryman, 6 brothers at first. Did all types of work, ran heist engine, on TATKO revolutionized work.
Struck it rich with red, sold to Bill Billo Greed Mountain Slate.
colors, waste, welsh., his brother was a good rockman. Spoke about immigrants, 1902 treatment, "not a fine art anymore" too much waste now he stated on the tape, stated he had a cow, a good garden and family, passion for paying debts, honhies and wops, greenhorns.

He spoke of techniques of boring, blasting, each color worked differently, more hard rock.

Tom Barrington had a knack, was a boss, his living conditions, Pine Hill-Aristocrats, Main St.-Middle class, Alley-slums, frugality-little waste. honest, earned respect, a religion to pay debts. His regrets-dangerous work, no compensation, training school, no bitterness. Most unimportant use-flooring and fire places, roofing slates became brittle when dried out.

He then spoke about James Covino of Wells, VT. Worked from 1910 to 1975. Quit school at age 10, 3 years of night school, came from Southern Italy, 20 miles from Naples.

Allon-Canyers, Fred Sheldon slate, Norton brothers, Rising- Nelson.
started to "make signals" at age 10, operated hoist (steam), electric in 1912, trimmer, then splitter, pit foreman at age 23, 30 foreman at Nortan brothers. Tramway at Raceville, South Poultney, operated by steam, oil engine. 1912-150 hp engine. Every other bucket loaded with coal. Working in winter, lost many days. On the tape, James convino spoke of his close family life, brother Joseph also worked in quarry. Went to NY bar with Mike O' Briend, lived near quarry.
Was money Plentiful? 10 cents an hour (9 hrs)
2 men loaded tramway, 1 man operated it, loaded on railcar, drilled with jumping jack (steam, 25 ft wide, 22 ft deep, made pillar, amed out with hand tools, no piece wover 3000 lbs, 2-3 per square.
Creator Bob Bascom
Title Bob Bascom Interviews- Audio tapes