I've got the Anthracite bug!

I've got the Anthracite bug!

PostBy: Gary in Pennsylvania On: Mon Dec 18, 2006 12:07 pm

This forum has given me the Anthracite bug! I row through e-bay looking at all the artifacts, relics, and history that's available. I also notice things I've never seen before...

Take for instance....On Main Ave in Scranton (between Lackawanna Ave. and Jackson St) is a Barber shop. I just noticed this yesterday.
In the front display windows of his shop, he has some coal historical items. One of them is a big, beautiful, heavy cardboard-like poster with a "Blue Coal is Coming to Town" ad on it. There was other text along with a pic of a long freight train hauling coal.
He's got large lumps of coal, a lantern, & other stuff. I wonder what else is in the shop?

I betcha that throughout the Scranton & Wilkes-Barre area (and all towns in between), there is a goldmine of coal related stuff in basements, attics, storage sheds, etc...

It's eerie that something that had such an enormous impact on our region is all but forgotten these days.

Now Now Now! Before anyone chimes in......Lemme explain.
Coal IS forgotten. Those that want to defend its modern day existence are gonna be those individuals that were there, back then, to experience it. Back when it truly influenced our lives.

Orrrrrrrr they had a father or grandfather who worked the mines; or was instructed to walk by the tracks on the way home from school to collect up some straggling coal; or had any other relative who would reminisce and share the stories with you.
Other than that……Ask any 30yr old or younger that doesn't fit into one of the above scenario's what coal means to them or this area......nada.

It is similar to patriotism. I don't think we'll (our whole society) ever have patriotism or love for our country quite like we had it around the WWII era.

Our younger kids don't seem to have so much a "Patriotic/love my country attitude" as they do a "Can't nobody F*CK with the United States!" attitude. There's a huge difference.

Some of the more memorable experiences I have (though I cannot always recall the specifics of the stories - that doesn't matter) are of sitting in a American Legion and just listening to what the guys have to say. They will tell you their story like it was their first time ever....though it is likely their thousandth time! Old vets can communicate emotion, pride, and patriotism like no one I've ever experienced!

Anyway - I seemed to have hijacked my own thread - but the points are similar. I fear that once those among us who hold all those stories/memories of our coal region pass on........Our legacy will go with them. We'll be a one paragraph blurb in a history book somewhere.

It saddens me. I’m sorry that I’m just now getting wrapped up in it. It’s like I missed the boat.

I wonder what type of answers we’d get if a poll were conducted for a few thousand “younger than age 30” citizens of NEPA asking them “What is NEPA known for? What is our niche? What do we do?”

What sort of answer would we get?
Gary in Pennsylvania
 

PostBy: mjwood0 On: Mon Dec 18, 2006 1:17 pm

Interesting take on our society. And I really can't say I disagree entirely, but I think that my "outside" perspective differs from yours. I'll play devils advocate for a moment and say that I think the problem is and will be much more widespread. :twisted:

I was born and raised around the Detroit area. Up until I left for college, I had lived there my whole life. I had never heard of people using coal for anything. Why? Well, Michigan isn't really known for coal. But I did hear a lot about automobiles. Detroit has a huge culture with cars. They have since the beginning and will until cars are no more. But lets think about 100 years from now. Michigan auto manufacturers are in trouble. They continue to lay people off and with foreign cars gaining an edge in our country, I really don't see a whole lot of future for Detroit -- sad, but true. In 30 years, no one will even think anything of Detroit when they see autos. They will think that Toyota, Nissan, Honda are cars and the memory and history of Detroit will be lost.

Leaving Detroit, I moved to Houghton MI to go to college. This town was mainly Finnish (in fact the street signs still had the Finnish street names up until the recent past). It was a copper mining town and has a huge history. But guess what? Copper isn't mined up there any more and the history is dying with the older generation who were directly connected to those who worked the mines. Again, sad but true.

I have also spent a brief time in Rochester NY. Eastman Kodak was huge. It was the history and one of the driving forces for the economy. Guess what? Gone.

Now I'm in Binghamton NY. IBM was huge here too. Gone.



What I'm getting at is that it's not an isolated problem. We're forgetting our history and that can't be good. We think of our country as a global melting pot and think this is a good thing. We continue to take on the identity of those cultures that have been brought here, but we are severely lacking any culture of our own. Everyone always talks about baseball and apple pie. Truth be told, apples were shunned by our founding fathers for the same reason they were shunned in Europe -- the Devils food. Baseball as well can be traced back to Rounders -- a non-American game.

Lets get serious here and think what we do in this country to promote the country itself? We've taken freedom of speech to an extreme and parents yell and scream that schools are allowing prayer (well -- perhaps not anymore). We get Martin Luther King day off, but not Washington's Birthday? I'm really not saying one man was greater than another, but it does seem that we are somewhat loosing our roots.

What's more, affirmative action requires us to diversify the workplace regardless of job skill. It's forced upon us to accept anyone and everyone and therefore, any and all cultures and beliefs. But the cost of this is that we loose the history and pride in ourselves.



I realize that perhaps people don't share all my views and that this site may not be the best place to post this. If anyone has any problems, PM me and I'll remove the soapbox part of this post. This is a topic that has a very immediate urgency to me and perhaps I can get worked up about such things.

Bringing the discussion back to coal, it's a true shame that we are forgetting our roots. It's a shame that we are forgetting all the men and women who made the development of this nation possible whether it be coal, copper, autos, etc...

All in all, just my $0.02. Take it for what it is.
mjwood0
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Econo

PostBy: Gary in Pennsylvania On: Mon Dec 18, 2006 1:34 pm

I realize that perhaps people don't share all my views and that this site may not be the best place to post this.


Hell no! I appreciate the dialog!

And I like the fresh perspective you offer regarding Detriot, Kodak, Copper, etc...

You're right - A lot of our identity (our blood & sweat history ) is going away.
Gary in Pennsylvania
 


PostBy: Richard S. On: Mon Dec 18, 2006 2:11 pm

mjwood0 wrote:
I realize that perhaps people don't share all my views and that this site may not be the best place to post this. If anyone has any problems, PM me and I'll remove the soapbox part of this post. This is a topic that has a very immediate urgency to me and perhaps I can get worked up about such things.


Again I am not concerned about what anyones views are, just try and keep the topics on topic. I hate nothing more than to start reading something that interests me only to find 6 posts down the thread it's gone completely off the track... I just stopped posting in another forum partly because of that, get half way down a page and the'd be dscussing what they had for lunch... :evil:

I realize things can wander and that's fine, just don't let them wander too far especially in the main areas about coal. :)

You can of course use the off-topic forum to discuss anything.
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

PostBy: bugize On: Mon Dec 18, 2006 5:28 pm

i agree with you guys....we have to remember our roots and culture are important to our kids and grandkids....ta hell with happy holidys....
i say.......merry christmas to you all. :shock:
bugize
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman
Stove/Furnace Model: Mark3

PostBy: Gary in Pennsylvania On: Tue Dec 19, 2006 4:48 pm

just try and keep the topics on topic. I hate nothing more than to start reading something that interests me only to find 6 posts down the thread it's gone completely off the track... I just stopped


:roll: :P :roll:

What if the starting dialog in the first post of the thread tends to wander around???

Heck - I hit anthracite, WWII Vets, Patriotism, demographics, and barber shops......all in the opening post!
Gary in Pennsylvania
 

PostBy: Richard S. On: Tue Dec 19, 2006 5:57 pm

That was to make a point and I would say well within the topic of the thread. Ironically what is happening now is what I am referring too. :wink:
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite


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