A Silent Fury: The ugly truth about the El Bordo mine fire

Yuri Herrera’s narrative journalism about the 1920 tragedy and cover-up is devastating

Yuri Herrera

Yuri Herrera

In his seminal non-fiction novel In Cold Blood, Truman Capote chronicled the murder of four members of a family in a small-town Kansas farming community in 1959. Herb Clutter, his wife Bonnie and two of their children were murdered by two ex-convicts who mistakenly thought there was a safe in the house with large amounts of money. The murderers were arrested, convicted and sentenced to death.

Capote’s book, first published as a series of New Yorker articles in 1965, is interested in the story behind the headline news. In Cold Blood is not a whodunnit but a why and wherefore. Capote spent six years researching the book, conducting interviews with investigators and townspeople that resulted in thousands of pages of notes. (He had help from his friend and fellow author Harper Lee.)

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