Unveiled on Labor Day 2022 as part of Monument Lab’s national Re:Generation cohort, Courage in the Hollers is a new, multi-faceted public memory project led by the West Virginia Mine Wars Museum, co-created with communities in both Marmet and Clothier, West Virginia. Through permanent sculptural monuments and new interpretive signage at both locations, Courage in the Hollers memorializes and honors the multi-ethnic and multi-racial unionist mine workers that challenged corporate power and aggression, leading to the fight for human rights that led to the armed Battle of Blair Mountain in 1921.
I worked as lead designer on Courage for most of 2022, and I’m especially proud to share the people, stories, and places behind this project with you! Check out this new video by the fine folks at JJN Media, with a dash of process footage that I shot and plenty of footage of our two unveiling events this past Labor Day!
These two monuments are just the beginning of a broader project to create interpretive spaces of memory along the 50-mile route that mine workers marched in search of civil liberties for the working class over one hundred years ago. I can’t wait to continue this work with our incredible team!
Update: new article by Abe Asher just dropped over on the Jacobin blog! “West Virginia Coal Miners Who Fought Their Bosses Are Getting the Monuments They Deserve” (Jacobin, Dec.16, 2022)