Lake City, Tennessee: The Miner's Circle - Mine Explosion GravesHeadstones set in concentric circles of the 184 who died on May 19, 1902, in the fifth worst mining disaster in U.S. history. "Killed every adult male in the town but three."
- 1030 New Clear Branch Rd, Lake City, TN
- I-75 exit 128 toward Lake City. Turn left (south) onto Main St./US Hwy 25W. Drive through town, for two miles, then turn left onto New Clear Branch Rd. Drive a quarter-mile, then turn left at the Clear Branch Baptist Church. Drive around the church and into Leach Cemetery at the top of the hill; the Circle will be ahead, on the left.
Visitor Tips and News About The Miner's Circle - Mine Explosion Graves
Worth seeing, yet sad. All those men killed, leaving all their wives and children...as if times weren't hard enough back in 1902.[Tony Lehrman, 07/07/2012]
The Miner's Circle is a memorial found in Leach Cemetery behind Clear Branch Baptist Church. It is a large monument encircled by smaller gravestones belonging to 184 of the 214 miners who died on May 19, 1902 in the 5th worst mining accident in American history.
At 7:30 AM that morning, an oil lamp sparked a methane explosion which killed every adult male in the town but three. The story is not well known, but is nevertheless quite compelling. The shrine is absolutely fascinating.[Pete Wade, 12/03/2006]
The bodies of the 30 unidentified miners were buried in a mass grave, just down the road from the mine, marked with a historical plaque on Slatestone Road in Briceville.