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Posts Tagged ‘Palmer Coking Coal Co.’

Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, April 28, 1976

Coal is moving once again through the streets of Black Diamond, Friday, April 15. Four trucks from Moulden & Sons of Enumclaw, began bringing coal into the Palmer Coking Coal Company’s washing plant at the north end of town.

Each truck has a capacity of 12 tons and each truck makes up to 14 round trips a day so by our calculations that amounts to 672 tons per day! According to Wendell, one of the drivers, they will be hauling five days a week, at least until September. (more…)

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Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, March 22, 1978

This big “mountain” behind the Hi-Lo shopping area in Black Diamond is a rock dump from coal mining operations of material “unusable at the present time,” Palmer Coal Company officials say. Any coal bed will consist of the coal plus layers of clay or high ash carbonaceous material which will have to be discarded to achieve a certain standard of quality for the salable product, and that is what this pile is. The pile grew between 1945 and two or three years ago. Other methods of discarding material are now being used. —Voice photo by Bob Gerbing

This big “mountain” behind the Hi-Lo shopping area in Black Diamond is a rock dump from coal mining operations of material “unusable at the present time,” Palmer Coal Company officials say. Any coal bed will consist of the coal plus layers of clay or high ash carbonaceous material which will have to be discarded to achieve a certain standard of quality for the salable product, and that is what this pile is. The pile grew between 1945 and two or three years ago. Other methods of discarding material are now being used. —Voice photo by Bob Gerbing

“Don’t buy your miner’s lamp yet!” Hugh McIntosh, public information manager for Seattle City Light, cautioned the Voice last week.

He referred to recently published reports regarding the possibility of reopening mining operations in the Green River coal fields, including the old mining towns of Black Diamond, Morganville, and Franklin. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Times, January 30, 1983

By Eric Pryne
Times staff reporter

Coal drew hundreds of immigrants to Black Diamond in the early 1900s—three young Italians, victims of a 1910 mine explosion, are buried in the town cemetery. The mining industry might make a comeback in the area after decades of dormancy. (Barry Wong/Seattle Times)

Coal drew hundreds of immigrants to Black Diamond in the early 1900s—three young Italians, victims of a 1910 mine explosion, are buried in the town cemetery. The mining industry might make a comeback in the area after decades of dormancy. (Barry Wong/Seattle Times)

BLACK DIAMOND — Their addresses may be the same, but they really are two communities—one old, one new—in and around this historic Southeast King County town.

The coal industry built Black Diamond a century ago. It was a bustling mining town with colonies of Welshmen, Italians, Slavs, and Finns—and a population three times larger than today.

But oil replaced coal in most of America’s furnaces, and Black Diamond already had begun fading by the 1930s. Today its best known export is bread from the bakery. The hills around town produce only a pittance of coal.

Even so, the mineral’s imprint on Black Diamond is everywhere. A mountain of slag and a coal car by the highway mark the entrance to town.

A stone in the cemetery tells, in Italian, of three men who died in a 1910 mine explosion. Many of Black Diamond’s homes are old coal-company houses, built before World War I.

And, among Black Diamond’s 1,200 residents, a good number of miners still fondly remember the old days. (more…)

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Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, January 11, 1978

By George and Dianne Wilson

When we initially talked with outgoing mayor Gomer Evans about this article, we asked that he give thought to three basic questions: “When you took office, what problems did you face?”; “What do you feel you accomplished during your term of office?”; and now, “Where do you go from here?” His description of the accomplishments clearly defines the problems faced. (more…)

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Originally published in the BDHS newsletter, Summer 2016

By William Kombol

Kuzaro home, November 18, 1939

Kuzaro home, November 18, 1939

There are a number of resources available to learn about the history of your home or lot. One of the best resources is the Puget Sound Regional Archives (PSRA), located on the campus of Bellevue College near Eastgate.

PSRA’s collection includes property record cards kept between 1937 and 1972. This is the best source of historic photographs for homes and commercial buildings. These old photos were taken by the King County Assessor with the tax parcel, date of the photo, and other notations written on the photo, from which excellent quality prints can be made. (more…)

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Originally published in the Pacific Northwest Post Card Club newsletter; July, August, September 2017

By Ken Jensen

Black Diamond depot, circa 1910. The train was pulled by engine No. 18 of the Columbia & Puget Sound Railroad, which served several mining towns in King County.

Black Diamond depot, circa 1910. The train was pulled by engine No. 18 of the Columbia & Puget Sound Railroad, which served several mining towns in King County.

For the miners and their families in turn-of-the-century Black Diamond—an isolated company town near the Cascade foothills of South King County, Washington—the 33-mile trip to Seattle was an all-day journey. The company’s railroad and circa 1885 depot, along with its general store, were the townspeople’s only real connection to the outside world.

In 1904 the Pacific Coast Co. owned all of Black Diamond—its mines, its land, its stores, pretty much everything—as well as neighboring Franklin and a handful of other King and Pierce county towns. (more…)

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Originally published in a Palmer Coking Coal Co. memorandum, 1964

palmer-coking-coal-coFor the last thirty-odd years, Palmer Coking Coal Co., Inc. has been in continuous operation as a vital part of the economy of the area in and around Black Diamond. Its people have had steady and secure employment at good wages these many years.

In a basic industry, such as mining, the direct benefits to the economy of an area are greatly reinforced by indirect and related jobs that are necessary to support a mining operation. (more…)

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