St. Louis (PRWEB) May 17, 2014
The Doe Run Company (Doe Run) proudly marks its 150th anniversary this year by celebrating both the past and future. Throughout the spring and summer, Doe Run employees and volunteers will contrast the past with the present by showcasing the St. Joseph Shovel, a rare mining artifact, along with modern mining equipment in a number of community parades. Although the shovel is no longer in use, it is an instrumental part of Doe Run’s past.
“The St. Joe Shovel is one of the reasons for the company’s success” said Art Hebrank, site administrator at Missouri Mines State Historic Site. “St. Joe, today Doe Run, was the first to develop the shovel as an innovative way to mine. The shovel gave the company a major step up in productivity and cost effectiveness.”
Originally built in 1922 by Doe Run’s predecessor the St. Joseph Lead Company, (St. Joe) the shovel was one of only 52 units ever produced. The first shovels were manufactured with support from the Thew Shovel Company, with St. Joe contributing most of the parts themselves. The shovel was modified numerous times based on the suggestions and needs of employees. A typical hand-shoveling employee could load about 21 tons of rock in one day. With the St. Joe Shovel, an operator was capable of loading nearly 300 tons.
“The St. Joe Shovel improved safety and productivity, and made the work much easier on the men who had to hand-shovel in the past,” said Bob Foshee, mine superintendent at Doe Run from 1963-2001. “It was considered a competitive advantage. The St. Joe Shovel was never manufactured for sale, forcing competitive mining companies to create their own shovels.”
Mining ended in the Old Lead Belt in 1972, as did use of the St. Joe Shovel. As mining moved to the Viburnum Trend, the company decided to employ newer technology, and utilize more modern diesel loaders.
Today, there is a St. Joe Shovel on display at the Missouri Mines State Historic Site in Park Hills, one at the Museum of Transport in St. Louis, and one at the Bonne Terre Mine and Bonne Terre City Park. Doe Run’s St. Joe Shovel is located at the Buick Mine and Mill in Boss, Missouri.
Doe Run will be celebrating its 150-year milestone with the St. Joe Shovel on May 10 in Ellington, Missouri, at the Spring Fever Days Parade. The St. Joe Shovel will also be on display at parades in Potosi, Bonne Terre, Herculaneum, Salem and Bunker throughout the year.
For more information about advances in mining technology throughout Doe Run’s history, visit the company’s interactive timeline at http://doeruncelebrates150.com/.
About The Doe Run Company
Based in St. Louis, The Doe Run Company is a privately held natural resources company and a global provider of lead, copper and zinc concentrates. Dedicated to environmentally responsible mineral and metal production, Doe Run operates one of the world’s largest, single-site lead recycling centers, located in Boss, Missouri. The Doe Run Company and its subsidiaries deliver products and services necessary to provide power, protection and convenience. Doe Run has operations in Missouri, Washington and Arizona. For more information, visit http://www.doerun.com and sustainability.doerun.com.