KENTUCKY: Jim Will Come Out Alive

At 9 o'clock on the morning after Christmas, the women and children of Four-Mile, Ky. began running out of doors. It is not the sort of village in which people ordinarily run—its weathered shacks squat dismally in a muddy hill hollow amid slatternly fences, outhouses and discarded tires. The women and children straggled past the empty coalies on the Louisville & Nashville Railroad spur, and up a barren knoll to the tipple of the Belva Mine. Smoke and burned fragments of cardboard and paper were puffing hotly from the tunnel mouth.

There were 30-odd somewhere inside, but for a long...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

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