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Part 8

The surface appearance and buildings of a coal mine gave little hint of the vast underground networks underneath them. The most important and noticeable feature of the mine was the tipple structure. The surface appearance and buildings of a coal mine gave little hint of the vast underground networks that lay beneath them. The most important and distinctive feature of the mine was the tipple structure. The tipple was the structure where the mine run of coal was processed and sorted for loading into railroad cars. After trips were hauled from the mine, they were sent down parallel rail tracks into the tipple structure, where they were dumped into a series of rock chutes and bins. Some mines also used shaking screens to separate coal from small rocks and soil. Most sorting in the tipple was done by hand. After the coal was sorted and sent into the appropriate chute that ran directly to a rail car. Non-coal debris was sent into side-dump cars, which were hoisted up the tailings pile and dumped. In addition to the tipple, the tailings pile was also one of the more noticeable features of the No. 9, growing in size as the mine extended and developed.