More than a century ago, nearly 2,000 copper miners — most of them immigrants — were deported from Bisbee, Arizona, to the desert of New Mexico. Those who survived the deportation were banned from returning.
At that point 1917, copper was critical for Americans fighting abroad during World War I. The miners, who were underpaid and worked in dangerous conditions, had joined the Industrial Workers of the World, which threatened a strike. Some residents saw the workers as communists who were undermining the war effort.
Authorized by the sheriff, residents dragged workers and their sympathizers from homes and businesses, forced them into cattle cars and deported them miles from town.