Thursday, January 20, 2011

Tarleton Thursdays: Did You Know?

" Use of Coal Brings Back Past to JTAC
Gas Line is Repaired During Cold Snap"

75 years ago......Tarleton students coming back in January were greeted with broken gas lines...

"Wednesday morning time turned back for a day as heavy, black smoke puffed and rolled and tumbled from the tall, white smokestack of John Tarleton College, creating a long cylinder of black and recalling the days of long ago when coal furnished fuel for the huge boilers of the college. It is small wonder that the dense smoke pushed and climbed into the air when it is known that the huge furnaces in Tarleton's boiler room consume four tons of coal daily, a goodly portion of the black fuel which means work and more work for those energetic student boiler men who partially earn their way through school by keeping th e furnaces roaring with fire!" (J-TAC, January 11, 1936)

A central heating plant costing $50,000 was built in 1920 containing two large boilers which heated all buildings on campus. The new smokestack, built in 1923 at a cost of $4,500, is shown in the photo above from the 1924 Grassburr. Utility tunnels held the steam pipes, water lines, and electric lines.

"Work being done on the gas lines necessitated the use of coal and gave the student keepers a small sample of the meaning of heat before the use of natural gas! The lines were repaired, the gas pressure rose to normal, and the black smoke soared lazily upward and disappeared into a blue sky, leaving behinBe sure to come to the library where it is comfortable and warm!d the thin, wavy film which denotes the presence of a gas fire below!"

Welcome to the spring semester! Wow, just think about trying to stay warm before natural gas! We hope you often find your way to the library where it is comfortable and warm!

Grassburr, 1924.
Guthrie, Christopher E., John Tarleton and His Legacy, p.60.
J-TAC, January 11, 1936.
King, C. Richard, Golden Days of Purple & White, p.150.
Tarleton Traditions, p.29.

1 comment:

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