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Tag Archives: Pine Branch

Coke ovens

Coke ovens, in this configuration and in the beehive configuration, used to be thick on the ground around this area of Wise County.  We’re near Pine Branch and these are a few of the 60 remaining derelict coke ovens…there used to be over 300 here, with railroad access, from around 1920 to about 1980.  They were used to burn coal in the absence of oxygen to produce coke, which burns cleanly at high temperature.  Catnip, as they say, for steel makers.