In case you’ve forgotten, life in a West Virginia coal camp was never that easy. But it’s what our parents and grandparents and great grand parents lived everyday.

1.

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Here miners carry timbering to the Gilliam Coal and Coke Company’s Gilliam Mine in McDowell County.

2.

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A family brings home groceries. Notice that all the streets are unpaved, there are no sidewalks, no camp maintenance at this Kingston Pocahontas Coal Mine in McDowell County.

3.

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Children at the Kopperston Mine in Wyoming County.

4.

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Sitting on the porch in a company house at the Kopperston Mine in Wyoming County.

5.

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Men, mostly miners, go to the baseball park in Welch, McDowell County, to watch two mining teams play.

6.

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The recreation center in Barrackville, Marion County.

7.

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Not a bad looking school house at the Kopperston Mine in Wyoming County.

8.

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A worked out coal mine near Pursglove mine No. 4 camp in Scott’s Run, Monongalia County.

9.

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This is what Osage, Mon County looked like.

10.

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Sunday school at the Warwick Mine in Welch.

11.

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The typical house of a miner at the Bradshaw Mine in McDowell County.

12.

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A mine in Osage, Mon County.

13.

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A sand drying plant of the U.S. Coal and Coke Company at the Gary Mines in McDowell County.

14.

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The Osage coal camp in the winter. This was what a camp typically looked like.

15.

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A miner’s child digs for coal from mine refuse in Scott’s Run.

16.

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A row of houses at the Exeter Mine in Welch, McDowell County.

17.

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What a typical outhouse looked like at the Bradshaw Mine in McDowell County.

18.

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Another house of a miner at the Bradshaw Mine in McDowell County.

All photos via The National Archives/Public Domain

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