Butte residents remember Miners Union Hall demolition


BUTTE, Mont - On June 23, 1914, a group of angry union members in Butte took 25 sticks of dynamite and blew up the Miners Union Hall on North Main Street.

Aubrey Japp, the administrative assistant at the Butte-Silver Bow Archive Center, says there was tension going on between labor unions.

Some members were part of the Western Federation of Miners, a group supporting the Anaconda Copper Company. The other group was the Butte Miners Union. They were anti-Anaconda and wanted better working conditions in the mines.

The unions didn't like each other. Members of the Western Federation showcased their dislike by blowing up the Miners Union building that night.

Japp says days like this are important for Butte's history.

"We have such a big connection to our labor history here, and it's a huge day for people of Butte," she said.

Japp says the incident was the start of martial law in the mining city. The militia and National Guard came to patrol the streets in case of any other union clashes.

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