SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Mineral County Coal Miners

Mineral County Coal Miners

My great-grandfather's mining crew circa 1915 in Mineral County, West Virginia. His name was Thompson Metcalf, and he is in the front row, crouched just to the right of the coal car tracks. The young boy in front of him was my great-uncle "Metty." Thompson died in the flu epidemic of 1918. My grandfather gave me the carbide lamp that Thompson wore. It appears they all had their lamps lit for the photo. They even included the most valuable members of the crew (at least to the mine owners). Some mine owners were of the opinion that "If you lose a man, there is always another one ready to take his place, but if you lose a pony or mule, you must BUY another one". This crew worked the mines in the Beryl, West Virginia area.

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SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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