About this series
In the early years of the last century, Cherokee and Crawford counties in southeast Kansas swelled with workers-immigrants from Eastern Europe who found in midwest mining jobs a backbreaking way to make a living in the New World.
Then the industries left.
Decades later, southeast Kansas is still dealing with the ramifications of the mining industry's heyday and withdrawal-and the costs of dwindling population, lagging economic standards and a scarred, unhealthy environment.
A three-day series started in the print edition on March 20, 2007; the River City Weekly documentary aired in two episodes, premiering March 21 and 28 — with the full video available at LJWorld.com.
The entire series, with additional multimedia story elements, appeared on LJWorld.com starting March 20, 2007.
Mike Belt, stories
Thad Allender, photos and video
Karl Gehring, graphics
Dennis Anderson and Karrey Britt, story editors
Nathan Borror, design
Matt Croydon, data presentation
Isaac Bell, story production
Joel Mathis and David Ryan, online editors
Free State Studios
Brian Powell and Greg Hurd, video interviews