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Circular letter sent by the University to market Swarn
to the Mining Industry
HANNA COAL COMPANY, OHIO
During summer research field visit in 1959, Swarn met the
Senior V.P. of Hanna Coal, a Division of Consolidation Coal,
and was offered a position on graduation. However no concrete
offer was forth coming with graduation fast approaching on
31st January. On a somewhat desperate telephone call, the
V.P. said "Of course we have a job for you - just come over."
So the day after graduation Swarn drove to St Clairsville,
Oh, and met with the V.P. in the late afternoon. As a starter,he
asked Swarn if he wanted to rise in life to which the obvious
answer was "Yes, of course". The V.P. advised that in that
case I should forget that I have any degree and start learning
the mining practices from the bottom. There was a background
about which Swarn got to know later. The V.P. had no formal
degree and so was the case with many senior Mine Managers.
However, the Company was known in the industry for its record
breaking efficiencies and some of the largest equipments industry
had were first introduced at Hanna Coal, including transportation
of coal as a fluid through pipeline to the ships several hundred
miles away at the port. The V. P. called the G.M. of Ireland
Mine in W.Va, to tell him that Swarn was to work there. By
the time I reached the mine several miles away with heavy
snow fall, it was dark. I was told to report at 7:00 next
morning at the pithead for going underground with the foreman.
No one offered help on where to stay nor did I ask for help.
I was no more a pampered foreign student in the University
but in the rough and tumble of industry. So I booked myself
in a Motel in Moundsville, a town fifteen miles away. I had
to buy a lunch box as I was expected to stay eight hours underground.
On reporting to duty next morning, still dark and snowing,
I was assigned to the foreman for studying a continuous mining
machine, a latest acquisition by the company. This machine
cuts the coal like a shaving machine in vertical and horizontal
movements. As the coal is cut the roof can fall down. The
work place was really scary, dusty and noisy at the front
end of the mine like a real war zone. I was to evaluate, using
time and motion study, maximization of the machine utilization.
The fore man had a gang of four people. No one talked to me
except during lunch break on the dirty mine floor...