The Butte Irish: Class and Ethnicity in an American Mining Town, 1875-1925
by David M. Emmons
University of Illinois Press, 1989
eISBN: 978-0-252-05465-5 | Cloth: 978-0-252-01603-5 | Paper: 978-0-252-06155-4
Library of Congress Classification F739.B8E48 1989
Dewey Decimal Classification 978.668

In this pioneering study, David Emmons tells the story of Butte's large and assertive population of Irish immigrants. He traces their backgrounds in Ireland, the building  of an ethnic community in Butte, the nature and hazards of their work in the copper mines, and the complex interplay between Irish nationalism and worker consciousness.

From a treasure trove of "Irish stuff," the reports, minutes, and correspondence of the major Irish-American organizations in Butte, Emmons shows how the stalwart supporters of the RELA and the Ancient Order of Hiberians marched and drilled for Irish freedom---and how, as they ran the town, the miners' union, and the largest mining companies, they used this tradition of ethnic cooperation to ensure safe and steady work, Irish mines taking care of Irish miners. Butte was new, overwhelmingly Irish, and extraordinarily dangerous---the ideal place to test the seam between class and ethnicity.

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