Died in Cherry Mine Disaster
Anton Vesel, was an immigrant who came from Austria and worked in the Cherry Mine. He met Frances Jurkas while staying at a boarding house her mother ran. They married in 1905. We believe that Frances was only 15 or 16 when they were married even though their marriage certificate shows she was 18. The only picture we have of Anton is their wedding picture. Anton died in the Cherry Mine Disaster on November 13, 1909. He left her widowed at 19 with two boys and pregnant with the third. She gave birth to him on December 6, 1909. Anton's body was one of the last ones that was brought up in February. Frances identified him by the patch on the bottom of his shoes. This is not mentioned in her story but she told her daughters about it. He is buried in the Cherry cemetery. We do not know the reason but Anton is not listed in books or documents as one of the casualties.
He is not listed in the inquisition or in the book "Trapped". We believe they got their information from the check register for the week of the disaster. The name on the check register was Pat Zeikell. The names of Pat Zeikell's children and homeland was the same as Anton's so we believe that they are the same person.
Frances wrote her story called "Broken Dreams Bitter Disappointments and Heartaches". Her story begins when she was the age of 6. We are missing page 2 of her story but in page 4 she mentions meeting and marrying Anton. She then describes the series of events she went through. On page 8 to the end she describes her life after she remarries. This is written in her hand writing. Her daughter corrected some spelling and traced over words that were hard to read.
We hope by sharing this story with the museum we have added another inspiring story to this tragedy.
Note: In coroners log he was known as Paul Zeikel on the mines books. His wife was Francis Vesel
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