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Subdeacon Joe

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Fun Coal Fact:
In 1918, coal miners marveled at a petrified tree stump encapsulated in a coal seam, a vivid reminder that coal is more than just fuel - it's a preserved piece of our planet's ancient past.
The process of vegetation being preserved in a coal seam, such as in the case of a petrified tree stump found by coal miners, is an interesting phenomenon rooted in geological and biological processes. Here's an overview of how it happens:
1. Formation of Peat: Initially, plant material, such as trees, ferns, and other vegetation, accumulates in swampy or wetland environments. This plant matter doesn't fully decompose due to the anaerobic (low oxygen) conditions in these wetlands.
2. Burial and Compression: Over time, layers of sediment, including mud and sand, bury the plant material. As more sediment accumulates, the weight compresses the plant material underneath.
3. Chemical Changes and Coalification: Under the pressure and increased temperature from the overlying sediments, the plant material undergoes chemical changes. This process, known as coalification, gradually converts the plant material into coal. During this process, water and volatile substances are driven off, and the carbon content increases.
4. Preservation of Vegetation Structure: In some cases, the conditions are just right to preserve the structure of the original vegetation within the coal seam. This can include leaves, bark, and even whole tree stumps. The process of petrification, where the organic material is replaced with minerals, can also occur, further preserving these structures.
5. Discovery in Mining: When miners excavate coal seams, they occasionally uncover these preserved pieces of ancient vegetation, providing a direct and tangible link to the Earth's geological and biological history.
This preservation offers a window into the past ecosystems and environments, showing us what was present millions of years ago when coal was formed.
Photograph by J. Horgan, Jr.
May be an image of 3 people
 
 
 
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As a young'un, I used to roam around the nearby coal strip mines in Southern Indiana. On one excursion, we found some very nice petrified wood laying in the mounds that were mined to get to the coal..

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My paternal grandfather worked in the coal mines in Scranton Pa in the early 1920’s. He died at 60 from black lung . I was 5 yrs old I hardly knew him, and I’m named after him!

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17 hours ago, Rye Miles #13621 said:

My paternal grandfather worked in the coal mines in Scranton Pa in the early 1920’s. He died at 60 from black lung . I was 5 yrs old I hardly knew him, and I’m named after him!

Wow, your grandpa's name was Rye, too.

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57 minutes ago, Sixgun Seamus said:

Wow, your grandpa's name was Rye, too.

Antonio!! But I’m Anthony, my mom Americanized my name :lol:

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19 hours ago, Rye Miles #13621 said:

My paternal grandfather worked in the coal mines in Scranton Pa in the early 1920’s. He died at 60 from black lung . I was 5 yrs old I hardly knew him, and I’m named after him!

 

My Mon's family was just a little south of there, Nesquehoning.  Her dad was a coal miner.  Passed away in the 1960s.  Photo from 1960.  

A bit of irony - the church you see in the background is an Orthodox church,  They went to the Uniate church about 6 blocks away.  When my parents moved to CA they just switched from the Byzantine Rite to the Latin Rite, so I was raised in the RCC.  But I've been Orthodox now for 30-some years.  Strange cycle of life.

 

Lovell Family Photos, most pre-1960 028.jpg

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