Saturday, July 6, 2013

Death’s Door – 2nd Edition

The long awaited second edition of Death’s Door is out. See it here:

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Thursday, November 24, 2011

Italian Hall disaster on Facebook

I have posted a TON of photos and essays on the Italian Hall disaster on Facebook. If you are interested in the topic, please visit this page. You will not be disappointed.

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Saturday, November 19, 2011

See Death’s Door on Facebook

There is a Facebook page for Death’s Door and the Italian Hall disaster.

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Sunday, September 4, 2011

Shortcut: Kindle

Shortcut is now available as a Kindle.

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Monday, March 28, 2011

New Book – Shortcut

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Saturday, January 1, 2011


It’s been a while since I posted here but don’t want you to think I have forgotten about the Italian Hall disaster. There was a lot of attention given to the event again at Christmas — there always is — and even got a few mentions for Death’s Door in the media.

I will be releasing a book this year that updates much of what we know about the Italian Hall. I have been continuing research into the topic in the years since Death’s Door came out. I even know the name of the man who cried Fire at the Hall and I will divulge that in my upcoming book. I will also point out some other important things that have taken place in this field — the study of the Strike of 1913 — in the last few years. For example, I have had major portions of my work plagiarized (stolen and reprinted without my permission and without the thief identifying me as the source).

Stay tuned.

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Thursday, July 9, 2009

July 2009

I have been spending much more time these days promoting my Douglass Houghton book but still think about the Italian Hall quite often. I am working on a book-length project right now about the murders at Seeberville and have found that the Hall and other strike-related issues have been coming up over and over again in my research.

Interest in the Hall is still quite high. There are even some revisionis historians who are actively trying to rewrite the known history of the Hall. Why they are doing this is unclear to me and the others in the history community. Some have gone so far as to say that we need to “re-think” whether there was even a cry of Fire at all.    Very strange.

There is a blog dedicated to some of this. See

History is like economics. You can push it around a little bit but eventually, the truth will come out.  (You can try and ‘regulate’ the economy, but for the most part, economic forces will always overcome the regulation.) Those revisionists in Hancock and Eagle Harbor will eventually be quieted by the overwhelming truth.


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Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Eelu Kiviranta

Among the various projects I’m working on, I am very excited about one that just kind of fell together. My great-grandfather was named Eelu Kiviranta and he wrote poetry. He was a Finn who lived near Nisula (there is a road there called Kiviranta Rd) and owned his own printing press. He wrote his poetry, set it in type, printed the booklets, and then rode around the area on his bicycle selling the poetry booklets.

My mother — Eelu’s grand-daughter — has been collecting his poetry all of her life. Some of his poetry can be found in local archives but the largest collection of the poetry BY FAR is the collection my mother has amassed. I am going to get the poems translated (they are all in Finnish), write an intro and biography of Eelu, and get as much of his poetry into print as I can.

He wrote about everything: life in Finland, life in the US, current events, humor, politics, you name it. He was also quite a character, and many people in the Copper Country have heard of him. Until now, though, his poetry was not widely available.

I’ll admit that one of the reasons I want to get this project done is that a book came out recently that mentions Eelu’s poetry. In the book, his name is badly misspelled and the translation of the poem (they published one poem) was not a good one. To do him justice, I’m going to see that the translations get done properly.

Stay tuned. I’ll add more detail as I learn it.


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Friday, April 10, 2009

April Update

I apologize: I have not been updating this site all that much lately. There were several reasons (“excuses!”) for this, among them: My Douglass Houghton book has just come out. Also, for a week or two I could not access this site. I though the entire site was down. Not sure what was happening there.

However, I feel the need to address a couple of things. Some people have pointed out to me that there is a movement among some (a very small number, clearly) writers of history to make the argument that there either was no cry of Fire at the Italian Hall, or that if there was, we could never prove it.

It’s an odd argument to make. There was overwhelming evidence that there WAS a cry of Fire. What we don’t know is WHO cried Fire or WHY.  Kind of like the Kennedy Assassination: Argue all you want about who shot the man; don’t deny that he was shot. Or the Titanic: How many of the survivors actually saw the iceberg the boat hit? Does anyone want to argue there was no iceberg?

I think these revisionist historians (and that’s what they are — the cry of Fire was one of the things that has been consistently correct all these years) simply want to make the issue of what we don’t know (who cried Fire) to encompass the whole story. Why? I don’t know. That’s not history. Trying to figure out why “historians” ignore facts and solid research is a question for psychologists.


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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Christmas Eve

As Christmas approaches, I am reminded once again that the anniversary of the Italian Hall disaster is coming up as well. I read an article in the Daily Mining Gazette recently that they are planning a ceremony this year, and someone has made votives — the candle holder/shelters — so that if you go by there on Christmas Eve, there will be 73 lights, to remember the victims.  It sounds beautiful.


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