History Alive is a program of first-person portrayals of historical figures by presenters who have conducted scholarly research on their character. The family of Mary Harris "Mother" Jones immigrated to the US from Ireland hoping to escape famine and unemployment. After marrying and moving to Memphis, a yellow fever epidemic killed her husband and all four children. The great Chicago fire of 1871 destroyed her dress-making business and she spent the rest of her life helping organize unions, especially among coal miners. She spoke at rallies throughout West Virginia supporting the United Mine Workers of America, and played an important role in strikes along the New River Gorge, Paint Creek and Cabin Creek, and during events before the Battle of Blair Mountain.