Stack Awards

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The Stack Awards recognize the best work in independent magazines from all over the world. I was short-listed for a Stack Award in Nonfiction for my essay, “The Book of the Dead,” published in the Fall 2016 issue of Oxford American. 

West Virginia-based photographer Lisa Elmaleh was commissioned to provide art for the story. A new website archives some of this history: The Book of the Dead: An Archive of Hawk’s Nest Tunnel Workers. 

2 thoughts on “Stack Awards

  1. Jack Oudiz says:

    Catherine, this was a spectacular piece of reporting and writing. Well deserving of awards. I am a retired OSHA industrial hygienist who also served 4 years as H&S Director of Molders Union (defunct) in Cincinnati. I wrote my Master thesis on silica dust exposures. Have known about Hawk’s Nest since early 80s. Was depicted in OSHA film made under Carter and banned under Reagan. Your effort to name the victims is remarkable. You are a hero.

    • admin says:

      Jack, thanks for your kind words, and for your service at OSHA and the Molders Union! (Side note of trivia: I was recently reading about how Mother Jones’s husband was an iron molder, and I believe that one of the first exposures she had to labor organizing was through the union he belonged to…) I’m glad I got to write about some of the true heroes of the Hawk’s Nest story in this article, including the local residents who worked so hard to put together the memorial graveyard at Whipporwill, the victims and their descendants who bravely shared their experiences with me and Rukeyser, and the members of the Gauley Bridge Committee who advocated for the workers at the time. They all showed such amazing courage and love. Thanks for reading the story! –Catherine

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