While counting the days till the Pottsville trip (see previous post), I am mulling over various facets of my research, and thought I would mention a few interesting details:
What is prop timber?
Monroe H. Kulp, one of the foremost figures I am researching, was president of the Kulp Lumber Company of Pennsylvania (later Maryland). Although this is well-known to most any Shamokinite familiar with the history of the Kulp family, what many do not know is that the company specialized in prop timber.
Prop timber is a type of lower quality timber, usually hard pine, which, although not considered usuable for finer lumber, was well-suited to function as mine props. In the coal regions of Pennsylvania, strong, durable timber was a necessity, used to support the ceilings of the mines. Therefore, although for most other purposes it was virtually unmarketable, the harvest of these types of timber was highly profitable in the anthracite region, and the Kulp Lumber Company was among Pennsylvania’s top producers of prop timber.