While in Bellevue we toured the site of the Frank Slide. On April 29, 1903 at 4:10 a.m., 30 million cubic meters of limestone crashed from the summit of Turtle Mountain and buried part of the sleeping town of Frank. The rock mass that fell was 500 feet deep, 1,400 feet high and 3,280 feet wide. Underground coal mining, water action in summit cracks and unusual weather conditions contributed to the disaster. The rocks from the slide still cover the valley, and they have built a road and railroad through the stones.
We also visited the Hillcrest Mine Disaster cemetery. On June 19, 1914 at 9:30 a.m. powerful explosions ripped through the black tunnels of the Hillcrest Mine. When the dust settled and rescue efforts were completed, 189 men lay dead. No one knows what triggered the deadly blasts.