Medicine: Zinc Stink

In the dovetailing corners of Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma lie the richest lead and zinc beds in the U. S. There a score of "TriState" towns house 100,000 miners and their families. Typical is Zincville in Ottawa County, Okla. Its battered shacks, pieced together out of tar paper and packing cases, nestle close to glittering mountains of "chat," or quartz dust, the "offal of the mines."On blustery days, wind whips and swirls the stinging quartz dust through the streets and into the houses. Constant inhalation of quartz dust causes silicosis.

Two years ago, shocked...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!