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Jack Savitsky
Train in Coal Town
1968
oil
31 1/4 x 47 3/4 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr. and museum purchase made possible by Ralph Cross Johnson



Savitsky worked in the coal mines of Pennsylvania for almost forty years before an accident forced him to retire in 1959 and he took up painting. The coal-fired passenger train in the center of Train in Coal Town brings miners to Silver Creek, where Savitsky first worked the mines. The lively border pattern depicts the bright red company houses in the community where Savitsky was raised. "We paid seven dollars a month for a six-room house," he recalled. "Every one of them was the same, all in rows, and you couldn't tell them apart."