The Coal Pile

The February 1907 issue of POWER magazine reported on the construction of a new coal-fired steam engine plant on the Merrimac River outside of Lawrence, Mass. According to the plant’s owner, "the simplest and most flexible means for handling coal… to the furnace is by animal muscle… that brings the coal to the firing floor and the firemen shovel it onto the grate. The ashes are pulled out into openings in the boiler-room floor… [and] carted off in a wheelbarrow."

The editors made light of the owner’s penny-pinching plant design that eschewed conveying equipment — because animal and human labor were cheaper — with the following images.

The coal conveyor

The ash conveyor

Do you have an interesting, classic, or humorous photograph of a coal-fired power plant — or of anything or anyone inside it? How about a great photo of your own plant? Set your camera to its highest resolution and e-mail your photo with a 25- to 50-word caption to [email protected]. We’ll print the best of the submissions in future issues of COAL POWER.

What’s in it for you — besides the fame and the thrill of seeing your name in cyberspace? How about this nifty COAL POWER baseball hat that our marketing department just designed. Everyone whose photo we publish will get one. Be the first at your plant to sport our logo.

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