Silent film footage of a strip mine operation in Schuylkill County, 1917

Grainy moving images tell the story of a strip mining operation near St. Clair, Schuylkill County during World War I.

Filmed in December 1917, this excellent footage shows the work of an early strip mine with steam shovels and the intense work going on around the surface mine. The film strip was preserved by the University of South Carolina.

The video, recorded by camera operator Howard Kingsmore on a cold, blustery day,  has the following description: 

Vast coal fields in Pottsville, Pennsylvania. Scenes include shovels removing 400,000 tons of rock from the mine’s surface, Engines and coal carriers, the mountains at St. Clair, large cuts and gorges, steam shovels loading coal carriers, coal veins, and a steam drill boring holes for blasting dynamite. – Filmed on December 17th, 1919.

You can watch the footage through the University of South Carolina’s digital collections website:

Watch Here


Featured Image: A still captured from the December 1917 silent film footage collected by the University of South Carolina 


Like what you see here? Follow Wynning History on Facebook!

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

3 thoughts on “Silent film footage of a strip mine operation in Schuylkill County, 1917

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s