Thanks for joining me on this visit to the Last Coal Road. I hope you enjoyed it.


My thanks go first of all to Mr. Joe Kovalchick, President of the East Broad Top Railroad and Coal Company, and to the Kovalchick family. Without their patient stewardship over four decades, the East Broad Top would not have survived to become the treasure of industrial heritage it is today. I'd also like to thank EBT employee David Brightbill, conductor extraordinaire, who did so much to make my first visit to his railroad a memorable one. If any reader of these pages recognizes the other EBT people portrayed in the images who are not credited by name, please be so kind as to e-mail me at I would be pleased to acknowledge them by name.


Friend of the EBT Mr. William Adams enlivened this essay by allowing me to reprint two of his fine digital images; I am very grateful to him. To see more of Bill's work, click here. EBT web impresario Chris Coleman read these pages with care, and saved me from many errors—though any which remain are no one's fault but my own. Two of my professional colleagues at MindQ Publishing, John Kwitkoski and Daniel Boris, also helped by placing the scanner and capture software of the MindQ graphics department at my service for after-hours image processing. Any weaknesses in composition, resolution, color balance, and general artistic merit in the resulting images are strictly my fault—they did their best to teach me!


Finally, I'd like to thank my particular friend Lynn Willis, who good-naturedly amused herself and excused my absence over a whole series of weekend afternoons and weekday nights while I worked away on my train thing.


If you enjoyed these pages, I implore you to visit the East Broad Top and experience it for yourself. The EBT is still very much an endangered treasure. Your patronage will help maintain the line for another season while plans proceed to secure its longer-term preservation. You will be richly rewarded for the trip. If you'd like to learn more about the Railroad and become involved in the campaign to help secure its future, please consider joining the Friends of the East Broad Top. FEBT is a nonprofit organization, not affiliated with the East Broad Top Railroad and Coal Company, whose members preserve the history of the EBT, raise money to stabilize its historic fabric, and serve as advocates for its preservation in government and heritage circles. Your membership will make a difference, and it ensures you access to their fine newsletter of EBT news, events, history and lore, the Timber Transfer.

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All materials, images, text and presentation copyright 1999 Erik Gray Ledbetter.  See Terms of Use.