Have you ever been in a coal mine?

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gillumhouse

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There are two kinds of underground coal mines. The Museum of Scuence & Industry in Chicago has an exhibit of a shaft mine. You walk to the top of the huge cage of stairs and get into the elevator car that takes you deep into the bowels of the Earth. Then you get onto the man-trap and everything is totally black and you feel the car move forward at a great rate of speed as the car jerks from side to side. It feels as if you have gone a great distance although it is probably just a few feet. It stops in a room in the mine and the miner demonstrates the methane lamp and talks about the canary. You see mine equipment demonstrated and I cannot remember the ending of this because it has been so long since I did it.
The other kind of underground mine is called a Drift Mine. You walk through the portal (or ride a man-trap) into the side of the hill and it goes into the tunnel or shaft. Sunday I took my daughter's friend to Beckley to the Exhibition Coal Mine. ALL of the tour guides are former miners. We were very blessed on this tour - the man that sat next to me is a current miner - a roof bolter. When we came to the first stop, there was clearance enough for me to change places with Linda so she could ask questions of Jim as we went along.
 
On my display, photos posted in the original get blocked so I am posting the photos here. I took a lot of photos and heard one woman say she wished she had brought her camera. I told her if she had e-mail and gave me her address I would e-mail them to her. She gave me her house address because she did not have e-mail. another lady heard me as as we were leaving, her friend (the roof bolter) turned around and came back so she could give me her e-mail. I told her to give me her address and I would send her a CD. Today I mailed both of the ladies a CD of my coal mine photos.
Here are photos of the tunnels.
lrg_DriftMineShaft.jpg

lrg_TunnelSplit.jpg
 
I have also been in a lead mine (Colorado) and a gold mine (South Dakota).
 
My father was raised in Greenbriar Co, WV - when he was about 14-15 yrs old, he had a job to provide the support timbers for coal mines. He didn't go into the mines but brought the lumber in trucks to the mines in the area. I'd be curious to know how long those timbers lasted down in the mines.
Thanks for sharing those photos..... sure wouldn't want to have to work there!
 
My entire family on both sides were Irish coal miners, down to my grandfathers...anthracite coal which is mined in shafts. DH always kids me...his family on both sides are Welsh who were brought to this country to be coal mine supervisers...keeping those Irish miners in check!
 
My entire family on both sides were Irish coal miners, down to my grandfathers...anthracite coal which is mined in shafts. DH always kids me...his family on both sides are Welsh who were brought to this country to be coal mine supervisers...keeping those Irish miners in check!.
My family are Irish but didn't get into being miners until one branch moved to Wales. I remember my great uncle having the blue veins like roadmaps on his body from being in the mines. There is still family in both places. Never actually been in a mine though and there is a mining historic site near here too. Great photos!
 
My entire family on both sides were Irish coal miners, down to my grandfathers...anthracite coal which is mined in shafts. DH always kids me...his family on both sides are Welsh who were brought to this country to be coal mine supervisers...keeping those Irish miners in check!.
My family are Irish but didn't get into being miners until one branch moved to Wales. I remember my great uncle having the blue veins like roadmaps on his body from being in the mines. There is still family in both places. Never actually been in a mine though and there is a mining historic site near here too. Great photos!
.
I am always in awe of how difficult and dangerous the work is/was.
 
double entry.... whoops!.
There are often several portals to a mine though as a seam is mined. This mine goes 1500 feet in.
My area is part of the Pittsburgh Seam, one of the richest nd largest coal seams.
Timbers last about 50 years after a mine is abandoned - that is why only an idiot does not have mine subsidence insurance in WV. Once the timbers rot away, the shaft collapses. When I was a kid, we lost my Mom's favorite cow when a shaft collapsed and she fell in. No way to get her out. Daddy did the humane thing. Here in my City, a man woke up about 2 feet lower than when he went to bed. The mine reclamation people spent about a year pumping a stabilizer substance into the shaft and fixing the houses on that street.
It is getting safer, but as in anything in life, will never be completely safe.
 
hmmm ... i am feeling a little claustrophobic looking at the pictures. not sure i'd want to go in.
 
I'm not sure I've been in the underground type...
My dad used to be a machinist making mining machine parts and when I was little we'd go to the coal festival every year in Cadiz, Ohio. I remember seeing these huge (multi-story) dumptrucks and loaders. It was very cool.
=)
Kk.
 
I'm not sure I've been in the underground type...
My dad used to be a machinist making mining machine parts and when I was little we'd go to the coal festival every year in Cadiz, Ohio. I remember seeing these huge (multi-story) dumptrucks and loaders. It was very cool.
=)
Kk..
Did you see the Silver Shovel? I think that is what they called it. It could move about half a mile an hour I think and the shovel could hold a humungous amount! It was over by Cadiz for years.
Did you know Clark Gable was from Cadiz?
 
I'm not sure I've been in the underground type...
My dad used to be a machinist making mining machine parts and when I was little we'd go to the coal festival every year in Cadiz, Ohio. I remember seeing these huge (multi-story) dumptrucks and loaders. It was very cool.
=)
Kk..
Did you see the Silver Shovel? I think that is what they called it. It could move about half a mile an hour I think and the shovel could hold a humungous amount! It was over by Cadiz for years.
Did you know Clark Gable was from Cadiz?
.
gillumhouse said:
Did you see the Silver Shovel? I think that is what they called it. It could move about half a mile an hour I think and the shovel could hold a humungous amount! It was over by Cadiz for years.
Did you know Clark Gable was from Cadiz?
That's probably what I saw... it was a loooong time ago.
I didn't know... but I know he got married at Malabar.
=)
Kk.
 
I'm not sure I've been in the underground type...
My dad used to be a machinist making mining machine parts and when I was little we'd go to the coal festival every year in Cadiz, Ohio. I remember seeing these huge (multi-story) dumptrucks and loaders. It was very cool.
=)
Kk..
Did you see the Silver Shovel? I think that is what they called it. It could move about half a mile an hour I think and the shovel could hold a humungous amount! It was over by Cadiz for years.
Did you know Clark Gable was from Cadiz?
.
There was also something called the Big Muskee. My dad tells of how he saw it and how amazing it was to watch
 
I'm not sure I've been in the underground type...
My dad used to be a machinist making mining machine parts and when I was little we'd go to the coal festival every year in Cadiz, Ohio. I remember seeing these huge (multi-story) dumptrucks and loaders. It was very cool.
=)
Kk..
Did you see the Silver Shovel? I think that is what they called it. It could move about half a mile an hour I think and the shovel could hold a humungous amount! It was over by Cadiz for years.
Did you know Clark Gable was from Cadiz?
.
450px-DSC03850.jpg

I had the opportunity to visit Krakow, Poland in 2004. There is a salt mine there that has been in operation since the 13th century. The miners have carved all sorts of art work out of salt in chambers inside the mine. Although much is religious art, they had Snow White and the miner dwarves in one chamber. I think they have quit taking salt out of the mine, but it is a tourist attraction and a world heritage site. This is their memorial to Pope John Paul II, who was from Krakow.
 
I'm not sure I've been in the underground type...
My dad used to be a machinist making mining machine parts and when I was little we'd go to the coal festival every year in Cadiz, Ohio. I remember seeing these huge (multi-story) dumptrucks and loaders. It was very cool.
=)
Kk..
Did you see the Silver Shovel? I think that is what they called it. It could move about half a mile an hour I think and the shovel could hold a humungous amount! It was over by Cadiz for years.
Did you know Clark Gable was from Cadiz?
.
450px-DSC03850.jpg

I had the opportunity to visit Krakow, Poland in 2004. There is a salt mine there that has been in operation since the 13th century. The miners have carved all sorts of art work out of salt in chambers inside the mine. Although much is religious art, they had Snow White and the miner dwarves in one chamber. I think they have quit taking salt out of the mine, but it is a tourist attraction and a world heritage site. This is their memorial to Pope John Paul II, who was from Krakow.
.
Wow! That is something!
 

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