San Francisco Call, 24 January 1892
The Alien Law* Violated and
American Miners Superseded
by Hungarians or Slavs.
New York, Jan. 23.— Contract Labor Inspectors Conkling and Osborne, sent from this city to the mining districts in Pennsylvania to investigate the workings of the alien contract law, have sent a report to Secretary Foster. The report states that they discovered evidences of wholesale violation of the law.
In the mines surrounding Scranton nine-tenths of the miners at present employed are Hungarians or Slavs. Five years ago the miners there were nearly all Americans. At the Arion mine, in Western Pennsylvania, Hungarian and Italian immigrants came in squads of 200 at a time direct from the Barge Office in this city, under charge of padrones.
At the mines near Carbondale in 1886 there were 600 miners, all American citizens. While the miners’ strike was on in 1889 and 1890 large number of Slavs and Hungarian, were brought to the mines from Castle Garden under protection of Pinkerton detectives.
At the last election out of 787 miners employed there just 68 were entitled to vote. The inspectors found that immigrants, brought over from Europe in droves, were passed through the Barge Office by an agent and taken to the mines to supersede American miners.
There are several men employed by the mine-owners whose sole duty is to visit the Barge Office and get immigration contract laborers passed through. One man in particular was nicknamed “Much Cousinman,” as he would visit the Barge Office and secure the release of immigrants, claiming them as cousins, brothers or other relatives.
* Wikipedia Alien Contract Labor Law
The 1885 Alien Contract Labor Law (Sess. II Chap. 164; 23 Stat. 332), also known as the Foran Act, was an act to prohibit the importation and migration of foreigners and aliens under contract or agreement to perform labor in the United States, its Territories, and the District of Columbia.