The McAllister Family
Alexander James McAllister of Crawford Co. Kansas
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Contribution from extended family members has made most of this page possible...
..." Alexander was a well respected man in his community. Both as a selfless man ready to put his life on the line to save another and as a humanitarian spending his time and effort helping those in need." -exact source unknown.
The following are excerpts from an news article which the source is unknown. The article seems to be an account of a "journal" furnished by the then President and Secretary of Local Union 705, Girard Kansas; the United Mine Workers of America. The Journal was prepared to have Alexander McAllister's acts of bravery "given consideration by the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission". Alexander had just been presented with a medal by the National Safety Council and the U.S. Bureau of Mines. This medal recognized his many acts of heroism and his "long and useful career" as a member of the United Mine Workers. From the Journal...
"Alexander McAllister, Sr., is one of the pioneers of our organization. The principles of the trade union movement are deep down in his heart. His first membership was given in Blantyre, Scotland, at the age of nine under Alexander McDonald. At the age of twenty-one, he came to Kansas ..."
The article continues with an account of his rescue down a 228 foot mine shaft after a massive explosion. He spent nearly an hour in the shaft, but when he was pulled up, he had saved the lives of two unconscious men. In another account, it was the life of his own son he saved...July 4, 1931 a severe storm hit Ringo, Kansas and power lines came down upon Alexander's neighbor who was caught standing in water...Alexander's son, Joseph, attempted a rescue and fell victim himself. Alexander was able to save both men.
"During the past winter Mr. McAllister has had donated by the Southwestern Coal Operators' Association many cars of coal which were delivered free to the homes of our members. During the past forty-three years he has been employed as a shot-firer. During this time he has survived twelve mine explosions and carried out of the mines, unassisted, sixteen of his buddies badly burned and crushed, and he recovered fifteen of his buddies who were beyond aid. McAllister has always come out of those mine explosions unassisted, many times badly burned."
Alexander was born in England to Catholic parents, his mother's maiden name PRICE. Alexander was working in coal mines of Scotland at the age of 9. He married Mary Alice MULLINS about 1887. Mary was born in England to Irish parents; her mother's name MCGUIRE. Between 1889 and 1911 Mary Alice and Alexander had the following children:
Lillian married into the Coulter family in 1907
Lillian c. 1915
Lillian Elizabeth was the oldest of ten...Joseph, Anna, Evelyne Marie, Margaret Lorraine, Rose Agnes, Alexander James Jr., Leo George, Francis Louise and Madeline "Goldie" Grace.
In 1889 Alexander and Mary made their first voyage to the U.S. and then subsequent trips back and forth until they became naturalized citizens in 1896. They made residence in Kansas where Alexander Sr. worked the coal mines and assisted his community. Mary did weaving for income. At one time both Mary's brother Tommy and Lillian's father-in-law lived with the McAllisters.
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Last Revised: January 11, 2003