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How Scofield Relief Fund Will Be Distributed

The book provides long lists of Companies, Lodges, Towns, Churches and People who Donated to the cause.  In total they collected about $118,000.

If the plan of distributing the fund raised for the Scofield sufferers is adopted today by the State committee, as recommended by the subcommittee which has been working on the proposition since Monday, the beneficiaries of the people's charity will receive their respective allotments in a lump sum and not in stipulated allowances, like a pension during periods of dependency, as was generally supposed would be done.

Several apparently very good reasons were advanced to the subcommittee and agreed to why the $100,000 or more raised for the sufferers of the coal mine disaster, should be distributed in lump sums to the dependent widows, mothers, fathers and orphans. Some of the widows of the dead coal miners are known to have land and homes in various parts of the State, and with the measure of relief that will be given to them in a lump sum, they can at once proceed to make their farms and gardens productive, thus solving the subsistence problem for themselves and their boys who can immediately help to get the family living.

A great many widows who have remained in Scofield have small homes there and a lump sum placed to their credit now will enable them to enlarge and equip their homes so that they could take boarders, many single men having recently come to the coal mining camp to work in the mines. This would make the dependent widows self-supporting.

It was admitted by the members of the subcommittee that there might be some instances of improvidence that could only be guarded against by adhering to the pension system, but it was the consensus of opinion that in the great majority of cases it would be far better to let the dependent ones have in a lump sum as soon as possible all that each one is entitled to receive in an equitable distribution.

How Fund Will, Be Distributed

The subcommittee of the distributors of the relief fund ascertained that dependent upon the 200 miners who were killed in the coal mine explosion, were 148 families of varying sizes. Some are more dependent upon charity than others, but the exact status of all has not yet been definitely ascertained. These uncertainties as to fifty-two families will have to be cleared up through correspondence.

Estimating that there will be about $100,000 to distribute, the subcommittee will recommend that the basis of distribution be as follows: To each widow over the age of fifty years, if allowed a pension of $20 a month for three years her quota in a lump sum would be $720; to each widow under the age of fifty, $576; to each boy under the age of fourteen years and each girl over the age of fifteen years (these ages being the average of commencing labor service) $108; to each full orphan (boys under fourteen and girls under fifteen) $432; to each fully dependent single parent, $720; aged father and mother, fully dependent, $1080 for the two; parent receiving partial support, $540; when both parents of a deceased son have partial means of support, $900 for both parents.

Pay out Relief Fund

Dependent Families Of Coal, Miners Get Lump Sums.

June 15

It was decided by unanimous vote yesterday by the State relief committee for the Scofield sufferers to distribute in lump sums the fund raised for the widows, orphans and dependent kindred of the deceased coal miners, according to the plan outlined in Thursday's Herald, rather than by the pension method. This procedure was recommenced by the subcommittee, consisting of Messrs. J. T. Hammond, W. F. Colton. A. W. Carlson. O, G. Kimball and Mrs. G. M. Downey, after having given the subject very earnest consideration. The entire committee discussed the plan of distribution, and finally, without descent, concurred in the recommendations made by the subcommittee. By this plan a large percentage of the sufferers can be made self-supporting, thus receiving greater permanent benefit than if the distribution were made in monthly installments.

It will be some little time yet before all of the money subscribed will have been paid in, and rather then keep the beneficiaries waiting long for the relief which the generous public have pledged to them, it was resolved to make a partial distribution of the funds at the earliest date practicable. This partial distribution will be approximately 16 percent of the amount to be allotted to each of the dependent widows, orphans and parents of the deceased coal miners, according to the schedule of units recommended by the subcommittee and adopted. In other words, it will be to the extent of six months' proportion of the allotment from the fund if the distribution were made on a basis and the annuities ran for three years.

Executive Committee Will Pay Out

Chairman Hammond was authorized to name an executive committee of five, himself included, to secure the data for the completion of the census of the beneficiaries and to allot the amounts to be paid according to the schedule adopted. The executive committee, which will be appointed in a day or two, was authorized, under the advice of Messrs. Kimball and Parmley the members of the central committee from Scofield, to make the partial distribution as determined upon.

It was also resolved that in making payments to the beneficiaries of the relief fund there shall be deducted the money and money value of supplies already advanced to them through William G. Sharp and Captain I. M. Barratt.

Accompanying the report of the subcommittee appointed to determine who are the beneficiaries of the relief fund and the degrees of dependency of the afflicted families was a book containing much of the data required in considering how best the fund should be distributed.

All To Widows and Orphans

While discussing the circumstances of the 200 families whose breadwinners were killed in the coal mine disaster, cognizance was taken of the conditions relating' to the seven miners who were seriously injured. Inasmuch as all of the injured ones were cared for at the hospital at the Pleasant Valley Coal Company's expense, and also that none of the men will lose any of their wages during the time they have been incapacitated from work, it was the opinion of the central committee at yesterday afternoon's meeting in the Governor's office that what would otherwise be the proportion of the injured men should be given to the dependent widows and orphans. The only exception that will be made will be in cases, if there be any such, where the earning capacity of the injured miners has been impaired.



Source: History of the Scofield Mine Disaster, by J. W. Dilley, The Skelton Pub. Co., Provo, Utah, 1900.

Editors Note: The I.. O. O. F. were very active in raising money for the benefit of the widows and children along with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This information is included for historical value, it does not mean the people of this project support these institutions.


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