I knew from a story I wrote for The Suburbanite during my first internship that one of the causes of subsidence is abandoned mines. So when holes opened up in the ground in Ohio, I decided to look into it.
While researching, I found a local professor who made it her life’s work to track down the unknown abandoned mines in the Mahoning Valley and beyond. Professor Ann Harris is well known as a mine expert among reporters and the Youngstown State University community, but this was my first encounter with her.
The story quickly evolved and Harris became the focal point. I used the morgue to dig up old photos of her at wor and read about a slew of holes in the spring of 1977. I love the morgue. This clip is among my favorites since starting at The Vindy in August.
A fellow reporter told me this story has been clipped, laminated and posted in the geology department at YSU. I’m guessing Harris liked it, too.