The Darr Mine Disaster

On December 19, 1907, a tremendous explosion shook the Youghiogheny River Valley at the Darr Mine in Van Meter, Westmoreland County, killing 239 men and boys. It remains the worst mining disaster in Pennsylvania history and led to important changes in the mining industry. Yet very few people know the story. With compelling interviews and rich archival images, the story focuses on a small, dedicated group of people - led by elderly Ann Toth of Bobtown, Pennsylvania - all determined to preserve the Darr's place in history. The documentary is from writer/producer David Solomon and videographer/editor Paul Ruggieri.

The Darr Mine Disaster aired on Dec 20, 2010.


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Series: Experience

The tuberculosis sanatorium in Cresson, Pennsylvania closed in 1964, but former patients are still haunted by their experiences. Many people remember the dangerous illness, the stigma of a TB diagnosis, and the landmark hospital in Cambria County that was nicknamed "The San." Rare archival photos, film and compelling interviews are woven around the memories of Chuck Felton, who launched a fascinating website about his life as a teenage patient in the 1950s. This Emmy winning documentary is from the team of writer/producer David Solomon and videographer/editor Paul Ruggieri.

Original airdate: Nov 21, 2011


Original airdate: Nov 14, 2011


WQED contributing reporter Dave Crawley documents Western Pennsylvania's contributions to World War II, including the Bantam Jeep designed in Butler, LST production on Neville Island, steel production in Homestead and the Westinghouse artist who created the Rosie The Riveter image.

Original airdate: Nov 07, 2011


Original airdate: Oct 31, 2011


Original airdate: Oct 24, 2011


Original airdate: Jun 27, 2011


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