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'The Ozarks Uplift' Documentary Now Showing at the Coleman Theatre

Photos and artifacts provided by the Ottawa County Historical Society were used in the film and are currently on display at the Dobson Museum.
MIAMI, OK.--- "The Ozarks Uplift" is a documentary about the lead, zinc, and coal mining in Northeast Oklahoma, Southwest Missouri, and Southeast Kansas. Paul Wannenmacher wrote and produced the documentary, covering the mining eras of the 1700's through the 1960's.

"This film's very well done, and it just documents how important the mining was, and it meant to families, and what it meant to communities," said Larry Roberts, Ottawa Historical Society President.

Photos and artifacts provided by the Ottawa County Historical Society were used in the film and are currently on display at the Dobson Museum.

"Mr. Wannenmacher, the producer of the documentary from Springfield, he met with the different volunteers and staff at the area museums. Helping collect photographs, and doing oral history interviews with area citizens," said Jordan Boyd, Dobson Board OCHS.

Wannemacher also allowed OCHS members to preview the manuscript of the story before filming. Members were then able to correct any information documented to ensure the accuracy of the film.

"I feel blessed that we had a part in it, a small part. But at the same time, the mining industry has such a historical impact and financial impact," said Roberts. 

The documentary shows the dangers of working in the mines. Miners went to work everyday with the chance of never coming back home to their families. 

"For a lot of them, that was the, it was just a way of  life, because they were just looking for some way just to make a little bit of money. Back then, ya know, money didn't go like it goes today," said Boyd. 

Those involved with the documentary want viewers to leave with a better understanding about the history of mining.

"I know for instance, Miami would not have been the city that it is today. If it had not been for the mining companies and the investments they made in this community," said Roberts. 

The documentary is showing tonight and tomorrow at 7 p.m. Copies of the DVD can be purchased at the theatre or at the Dobson Museum in Miami during business hours. 

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