Uncle Bob's Travels

Places I've hung out in or just neat postcards

Archive for the tag “Harlan County KY”

LeJunior KY Post Office


LeJunior, in Harlan County, is on the railroad and Dixie Darby Coal/Fuel Company had at least one mine here.  The most active period seems to have been in the mid- to late-40s.  I have not yet found an origin for the name “LeJunior”.   There is a fair number of pictures of this town and its peoples on the web.

Black Joe


This is in Harlan County KY, near Harlan.  From the research I’ve done on this, nobody seems to know how this community got its name.  Two coal companies headquartered here: Harlan Fox Coal/Mining Company 1918-1932 and JB Blue Gem Coal Company 1920-22.  The Post Office was named “Black Joe”, but the railroad (L&N) referred to the station here as “Woods Station”.

Yard Art

You just never know what will turn up in Harlan County KY.  These are in the front yard of a residence in Breedens Creek hollow near Holmes Mill.  They’re wood carvings, life size.

Coal Auger


We ran across this rusty, well-worn Salem Tri-(?)ead MC Mul-T Coal Auger (made in Salem OH) on the grounds of a strip mine in Harlan County KY.  Looks like the company just shoved it to the side of the road and drove away. Once, it was a very boring machine <snicker>.

Coldiron and Wallins Creek Post Offices

We’re in Harlan County KY, recording post offices.

First for this day was the Post Office at Coldiron KY.  The first PO here was established in 1928.  Mary Coldiron was the postmistress, but the reference book I use indicates that Coldiron got its name from one Elihu Coldiron, and early settler.

And here is the Wallins Creek Post Office.  The first PO was set up in 1866.  Wallins Creek, according to the place name book, is named after a pioneer surveyor who was slain by indigenous warriors in this area.


Harlan KY signs

Both of these signs are in front of Harlan’s impressive courthouse.  The first one reminds us of how chaotic and dangerous it was during the years of the civil war that broke out in the United States in the middle of the 19th century.  “Your burn my courthouse; I’ll burn yours!”

This plaque shows you how long coal has been hauled out of Harlan County (the date’s hard to read. It’s August 23, 1911):

Elzo Guthrie Elementary School

Elzo Guthrie Elementary School served the families in and around Pansy KY as far back (as I can determine) as 1955, but was finally closed in the 1980s.  The building was sold to a local businessman who converted the building into some sort of factory, which was shuttered about 10 or so years ago.  The building is now totally stripped out and vandalized (paint ball wars!).  Because of the tight fencing around the building, the heavy greenery, and the siting, I was only able to get a decent picture of what was probably the original front of the school.  I didn’t take any pictures of the interior because, well, one stripped-out building looks pretty much like any other.  I’m told that in 1993 there were 16 schools in Harlan County…now there are only 9.  Oh, I looked up Elzo Guthrie.  Not a guy you’d want to mess with.

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