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The case of Jenson v. Eveleth Mines--all 14 years of it

March 25, 1975: Lois Jenson reports to work at Eveleth Mines.

October 5, 1984: Lois mails complaint to the Minnesota Human Rights Department. A week later, her car tires are slashed.

January 1987: the state determines probable cause and moves for conciliation, but Ogelbay Norton Co., the Cleveland-based part owner and manager of the mine, refuses to pay the state's request for $6,000 in punitive damages and $5,000 for mental anguish to Lois.

August 15, 1988: Attorney Paul Sprenger files Lois E. Jenson and Patricia S. Kosmach v. Eveleth Taconite Co. in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis, asking that the suit be certified as a class action.

December 16, 1991: U.S. District Court Judge James Rosenbaum makes legal history by permitting Jenson v. Eveleth to proceed as the first class action ever for sexual harassment.

January 25, 1992: Lois stops working at the mine. She is soon diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

December 17, 1992: The trial to determine liability begins before U.S. District Judge Richard Kyle in St. Paul.

May 14, 1993: Judge Kyle rules that Eveleth Mines is liable for not preventing sexual harassment. He orders the company to develop programs to educate all employees on sexual harassment.

Summer 1993: Retired federal magistrate Patrick McNulty of Duluth is named special master to oversee a trial to determine how much money the women should receive in damage awards.

February 15, 1994: McNulty permits the company's lawyers to request medical records of all of the women dating from birth. For the next six months the women are subjected to degrading grilling about their lives in long depositions.

November 7, 1994: Pat Kosmach dies of Lou Gehrig's disease.

January 17, 1995: The first half of the trial for damages takes place in Duluth and lasts until February 10. After a break, it resumes again on May 22 and ends June 13.

March 28, 1996: McNulty writes a 416-page report that calls the women "histrionic," makes public sordid details about their private lives, and awards them each an average of $10,000.

December 5, 1997: The Eight Circuit Court of Appeals reverses McNulty's opinion and orders a new jury trial for the damages.

December 30, 1998: Fifteen women settle with Eveleth Mines for a total of $3.5 million on the eve of going to trial.

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