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COAL RUN, PA

Coal Run (also known as Clune Post Office), in Young Township, was established in 1912 - 1913 by the Coal Run Mining Company, which was privately owned by Lucius Waterman Robinson, the president of the Rochester & Pittsburgh Coal & Iron Company. (Luciusboro in another part of Indiana County was named after him.) At first Mines No. 1, 2, and 3 were opened. By 1918 two more mines were opened. A few company houses and another tipple and rail spur were built on the other side of the hill from Coal Run at the No. 6 mine - all gone now. Eventually ten undeground mines and one surface mined operated at Coal Run. The undeground mines were later known as Kent No. 5 and No. 6. The town was served by the Jacksonville branch line of the Buffalo, Rochester & Pittsburgh Railway. In December 1931, the Coal Run Mining Company was purchased by the R&P-controlled Helvetia Coal Mining Company for its new subsidiary corporation, the Kent Coal Mining Company.


(March 2020 image by author)

Former coal mine office, company houses, and the typical patch town Honor Roll.


(March 2020 image by author)

This building was originally the mine office. It now serves as the post office for Clune, Pa.


(March 2020 image by author)

Most Pennsylvania coal company towns of a certain size feature these "Honor Rolls" to memorialize the community's veterans. Click here for a higher resolution image of the honor roll so that the names can be read more clearly.


(March 2020 image by author)

Some of these company houses are made from block instead of wood, similar to the ones at Luciusboro.


(March 2020 image by author)

There are also these duplex company houses at Coal Run, which are found at coal company towns all over Western Pennsylvania.


(March 2020 image by author)

The railroad bed is still visible, although the rails and ties have been removed.


(March 2020 image by author)

This is part of a row of houses at the top of the hill. They may have been constructed later than the rest of Coal Run. Coal Run's layout is unusual, in that it isn't the typical grid arrangement of streets ususally found in Pennsylvania coal towns.


(2005 image by Tom Connelly)

Holy Cross Byzantine Church had been closed when this photographer snapped a photo of it. The church was established in 1945.


(March 2020 image by author)

Later the church was going to be demolished, when one gentleman purchased it and remodled it into his home, as seen here. Obviously, it is now private property, but I did obtain his permission to photograph it. I asked if the building next door was the rectory, and he stated that it was actually once a "Baptist school."


(March 2020 image by author)

Ruins of a tipple at Coal Run. This wasn't the original tipple, but one that was built in later years - perhaps the 1950s.


Sources:

Rose, Kenneth, editor. Indiana County, Pennsylvania; An Inventory of Historic Engineering and Industrial Sites. 1993.

“Encounter with "church" owner, 14 Mar. 2020.

The Carpathian Connection - Pennsylvania Churches, www.tccweb.org/pennsylvaniachurches.htm.



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