Abandon Coal Mine in HDR

Some of you may have noticed that I have a fascination with abandon buildings and houses.  Now I am adding industrial sites to the mix as well.  The shots in this post were taken at the Nemacolin mine in Nemacolin, Pa.  Nemacolin mine was in operation from 1917 through 1985-6 when it was closed for good.  In 1919 Nemacolin mine was considered to be the largest coal mine in the country.  The town, built by the coal company, had a theater, tennis courts, amusement hall, and a swimming pool. They also had their own hospital and elementary school, both of which have gone by the way side.  It was said that the town was considered to be the model mining town in the country and the mine was considered to be the model mine for the entire world to look towards.  To give you an idea of how advanced the town was, in 1917 the town had its own sewage treatment plant.

On a personal note, two of my family members worked in this mine.  My grandfather worked in this mine his entire coal mining career.  I was not aware of this until after visiting the mine and taking the photographs.  I was talking with my mother and had mentioned that I was at that mine taking photos. She got really excited and told me the story of how she would go with my grandfather on Saturday mornings to pick up his pay check.  They lived across the river, in Messmore, and would drive to the Nemacolin ferry and cross over to the mine to pick up his check.  She also told me of the stories that my grandfather would tell about walking out of the shaft when there would be a problem in the mine.  Apparently if there was a problem or the electricity would go out the miners would have to walk a set of steps from the bottom of the mine up the entrance shaft.  The other member of my family that worked there was my father.  He worked there a short period of time until transferring to the Buckeye mine in Carmichaels Pa.  She also told me that the miners were able to travel underground between the two mines, which are approximately 2-3 miles apart.

For the photographers reading this the are all HDR photos processed using HDR Efex Pro.

I hope that everyone enjoys the photos and the short history lesson about this mine.  Feel free to leave comments and ask questions.

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