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LAWRENCE, PA (MONTOUR NO. 4)

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Here is a vintage view of the Pittsburgh Coal Company's Montour No. 4 coal mining complex at Lawrence, PA in Cecil Township, Washington County. (Library of Congress image)


Most of these buildings were still in existance in 2004, and are being reused by other businesses. (Jan. 2004 image by author)


In another vintage photo of the Montour No. 4 mine buildings, a mule pulls mine cars in front of a fan house.


This picture is of another part of the Montour No. 4 mine that was farther up Brush Run. Note the aerial tramway hauling away the refuse to the slate dump.


Most of the structures in the above photograph have been removed, but this boiler house and tramway foundation are still existing. These are actually in Peters Township. (Jan. 2004 image by author)


Also still in existence is this structure from the Hickman air shaft of the Montour No. 4 mine. It is along Valley Brook Road, near the intersection with Route 19. At one time there would have been a fan here, and also an electrical substation. (Oct. 2009 image by author)


Unfortunately, this tipple at the Montour No. 4 site has been destroyed.


In another old picture a fire boss inspects safety lamps at the Montour No. 4 mine.


The Montour No. 4 mine sprawled for miles, and it became necessary for the Pittsburgh Coal Company to build a shaft portal at the "back" end of the mine. This building on Bebout Road, which is now being used as a construction office, was the bathhouse for that "back" portal of the mine. (Sep. 2003 image by author)


Most of the housing in the Lawrence patch are the two-story semi-detached two family dwellings that are so common in Western Pennsylvania coal company towns. (Jan. 2004 image by author)


However these one story homes are at the back of the Lawrence patch. (Jan. 2004 image by author)


In addition to those two types of homes, these four room houses were also constructed for the employees of the Montour No. 4 coal mine. (Jan. 2004 image by author)


(Jan. 2004 image by author)

The following photos were contributed by Angelo Brunetti a.k.a. Angelo Bruno. He writes, "When my grandparents settled in Lawrence no one could pronounce the Brunetti name so for years the family went by Bruno. My grandfather settled in Mayburey, W.Va. around 1910 as a coal miner from Ellis Island and later settled in Lawrence around 1920. The front street houses was where all the bosses and the boarding house were. The next two rows of house were mostly Slavic, Irish and other white families. The bungalows in the back two row was where the Italians and Blacks lived. I remember my father telling me that he paid 500 dollars for the house from the coal company when they had a chance to buy it. I sold it in 1982 for 40,000 dollars. I have lived in Peters Township since 1982. The company store sat right across the street from St. Elizabeth Church. It is just a grass lot today with a little fence around it. It closed in the early 60's and was turned into a warehouse where plastic was stored and later caught on fire and burned to the ground. The mine closed in the mid 70's. A wall had broken thru from Montour #10 at Library and flooded the entire mine. Montour # 10 was full of water at the time they were mining under what is South Pointe today at the time that the mine was flooded. I still can remember going to the company store and checking the sign they hung everday to see if it said work tomorrow or idle."


The street through the "Irish/Slavic" section consists mostly of muddy ruts


An excellent photo of the tipple, head frame, and associated buildings at the Montour No. 4 mine site


Another view of the same tipple. The brick buildings are still in existence today, and have been recyled into other businesses.


A final view of the Montour No. 4 mine complex


A larger, perhaps later, tipple at Montour No. 4 mine.


Ron Franko took these pictures of a sealed portal into the Montour No. 4 mine that was recently uncovered.


A closer look at the portal reveals the inscription, "Montour 4 1953."


Here are a few of the series of photos taken around Montour 4 by the Farm Security Administration in 1942:


One of the fire bosses at Montour 4 signing the record which shows that he has inspected all working places in his section, before the entry of the men and once after work has started. (Photo by John Collier, FSA/OWI Collection, Library of Congress)


Pittsburgh Coal Co. employee operating a rotary car dumper in the top of the tipple or headhouse. (Photo by John Collier, FSA/OWI Collection, Library of Congress)


Montour No. 4 coal miners coming up the man shaft at the end of their shift. (Photo by John Collier, FSA/OWI Collection, Library of Congress)


Miner brining a trip of coal cars out of the Montour No. 4 Mine.(Photo by John Collier, FSA/OWI Collection, Library of Congress)


Montour 4 miners using an electric undercutting machine. This machine made a 3 foot cut under the coal.(Photo by John Collier, FSA/OWI Collection, Library of Congress)


Miners in the "dinner hole."(Photo by John Collier, FSA/OWI Collection, Library of Congress)


Mountour 4 coal miner at the end of his work day. Great picture. (Photo by John Collier, FSA/OWI Collection, Library of Congress)


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