A 128-page collection of historical photographs of Vintondale compiled by local historian Denise Dusza Weber has been released by Arcadia Publishing Company as part of its Images of America series. Its release is part of the borough’s centennial observation last year. Publicity materials for the release include the following description:
Vintondale, located in Cambria County, holds a unique position in history. It was a coal-mining town with a notorious reputation based on an antiunion legacy that lasted until the New Deal. Warren Delano, the maternal uncle of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, was the founder and owner of the company town.
Through vintage photographs, Vintondale traces the area’s history from when the first coal was shipped in 1894 until the No. 6 mine was closed in 1968. It includes such Vintondale claims to fame as the first long-wall mining operation, lawsuits by the fledgling American Civil Liberties Union in the 1920s, a 1940 Chapter 13 bankruptcy and reorganization, and a homegrown terrorist called “Friend of a Friend.” Today the sleepy borough belies its past as the center of the bustling Ghost Town Trail and as a recreation area.
Author Denise Dusza Weber is also the author of Delano’s Domain: A History of Warren Delano’s Mining Towns of Vintondale, Wehrum, and Claghorn, Volume I, 1789–1930. She grew up in Vintondale, attended the Vintondale grade schools, and graduated from Bishop Carroll High School in 1964. After earning history degrees from the Indiana University of Pennsylvania, she taught in the Indiana Area School District.