I was always told there was nothing left of the ovens at Philips. Recently I was looking at a terrain map of the area and noticed what appeared to be features on the ground of the unique layout of the coke plant.
|Notice the unique layout of the four blocks of ovens in this 1939 aerial.|
|This is the same area on a modern terrain map. It would definitely appear that something could be there.|
I was in the area today and decided to go back and have a look. There wasn't a whole lot left. Most of the ovens were gone but there were a substantial amount of retaining walls left. When I got to the lowest block that all changed. There were six or seven very intact ovens. I also found the ruins of a large brick building.
The Philips Coke Works were built in 1907 by the H.C. Frick Coke Co. Their significance is that they were the last beehive coke plant built in the old basin of the Connellsville Coke Region. The coal was exhausted at Philips between 1940 and 1945 and the plant shut down. Philips was considered a model coke plant at the time and contained 400 ovens.
|The far right, where the ovens are flaming is where I found the intact ovens. On the left, the brick building is in the area where I found the old brick ruins of a building.|
|Another post card I have of Philips.|
|There were a lot of walls but no ovens in most of the area.|
|Bits and pieces here and there.|
|This last block was an amazing surprise.|
|After that, it was all the same.|
|This mortar is still incredibly tight. This place left me with more questions than anything. It certainly hasn't been reclaimed. Maybe it was started and the money ran out?|
|Incredibly intact end of one of the blocks.|
|The ruins of the brick building.|
|The wood is burned.|