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{true story} Coal miner Lee Hipshire in 1976, shortly after emerging from a mine in Logan County, W. Va. at the end of his shift. At age 36, he had worked 26 years underground. A few years later, Lee took early retirement because of pneumoconiosis, or black lung disease. He died at 57.

Documenting 'Dirty' Jobs: Miners At Work

{true story} Coal miner Lee Hipshire in 1976, shortly after emerging from a mine in Logan County, W. Va. at the end of his shift. At age 36, he had worked 26 years underground. A few years later, Lee took early retirement because of pneumoconiosis, or black lung disease. He died at 57.

Woman Coal Miner, 1890 by mcrarchives, via Flickr

Woman Coal Miner, 1890 by mcrarchives, via Flickr

Hard Day At Coal Mining Using the 16 Pound Sledge Hammer, Breaking Up Coal For Loading Coal Cars

Hard Day At Coal Mining Using the 16 Pound Sledge Hammer, Breaking Up Coal For Loading Coal Cars

Coal Miners for Christ

Coal Miners for Christ

This picture was taken in Blantyre October 22, 1877: the day the Blantyre mining disaster in Scotland killed 207 miners. The widows and orphans left behind were evicted by mine owners and were likely sent to poor houses.

This picture was taken in Blantyre October 22, 1877: the day the Blantyre mining disaster in Scotland killed 207 miners. The widows and orphans left behind were evicted by mine owners and were likely sent to poor houses.

A coal miner and his daughter. This photo was taken by talented photographer Natalie Franklin.

A coal miner and his daughter. This photo was taken by talented photographer Natalie Franklin.

Coal Miner's are still dying from Black Lung.

Coal Miner's are still dying from Black Lung.

Coal miners WV 1946

Coal miners WV 1946

Coal mining vintage photo. Getting coal out of a "COALBANK" as they were called. A little cave on their own land,that was full of coal.

Coal mining vintage photo. Getting coal out of a "COALBANK" as they were called. A little cave on their own land,that was full of coal.

Kentucky Coal Miner - I was born a coal miner's granddaughter! Love you, grandpa!

Kentucky Coal Miner - I was born a coal miner's granddaughter! Love you, grandpa!

Coal Miner by Day - Daddy by Night

Coal Miner by Day - Daddy by Night

Coal miners picking out "impurities" before the coal is processes. Before the child labor laws, much of this work was done by boys.

Coal miners picking out "impurities" before the coal is processes. Before the child labor laws, much of this work was done by boys.

Coal miner, Desmond Hairston and family (Longacre, West Virginia) (1943) by Penn State Special Collections Library via Flickr

Coal miner, Desmond Hairston and family (Longacre, West Virginia) (1943) by Penn State Special Collections Library via Flickr

Coal miners bucket- Just like my Daddy's! He always had a special treat in it for me!!!

Coal miners bucket- Just like my Daddy's! He always had a special treat in it for me!!!

Miner working in a confined, cramped position inside a narrow coal seam on a…

Miner working in a confined, cramped position inside a narrow coal seam on a…

WV coal miner. The companies valued the ponies more than they valued their men.  Animals cost money to replace......

WV coal miner. The companies valued the ponies more than they valued their men. Animals cost money to replace......