The coal mine represented much more than a way of making a living to the miners of Thurber, Texas, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries - it represented a way of life. Coal mining dominated Thurber's work life, and miners dominated its social life. The large immigrant population that filled the mines in Thurber represented more than a dozen nations, which lent a uniqueness to this Texas town. In 1888, Robert D. Hunter and the Texas & Pacific Coal Company founded Thurber on the site of Johnson Mines, a small coal-mining village on the western edge of North Central Texas where Palo Pinto, Erath, and Eastland counties converged. For almost forty years the company mined coal and owned and operated a town that by 1910 served as home to more than three thousand residents. Marilyn Rhinehart examines the culture of the miners' work, the demographics and social life of the community, and the benefits and constraints of life in a company town.