David Thomas (20 Apr 1864) and Richard Thomas (6 Sep 1866) Evans were just two of the eight boys born to parents Isaac Robert and Catherine (Thomas) Evans. They were born and raised in Mythyr Tidfil, Glamorgan, Wales. After being introduced and joining The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the Evans family decided to come to America to move west with the Saints. David made the trip in May of 1885 and married Mary Ann Davis in Wyoming on 17 Sep 1887. It isn’t clear when Richard came to America, but he married Martha Evans on 20 Jul 1890 in Manti, Utah.
While living near Scofield, Utah, David and Thomas along with several of their brothers worked as miners for the Pleasant Valley Coal Company. While working in the Winter Quarters mine, on May Day in 1900 both brothers lost their lives from an explosion that killed at least two hundred men. The magnitude of this tragedy left no family in the town untouched. This was and still remains the largest mine disaster for that day and age.
Richard left behind his wife and four children all under the age of nine. David left behind his wife, but it’s unknown to me at this point in my research if he was a father. The brothers had made quite a name for themselves as musicians and singers. This made the loss for the community that much greater.
David and Richard are my second great grand uncles. The sons of my third great grandparents. While I never knew them this story can’t help but bring sadness to my heart and mind. I can’t imagine the enormous loss of husbands, fathers, brothers, and sons that died that day, and how the community was so deeply affected. I can only hope that the people of this community helped each other heal through this tragic connection.