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September 25, 2017


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My dad worked for Portland Gas & Coke. What he did I don't know. It was before I came along. But I remember as a kid when he'd talk about when he worked for the "Coke Company." I always thought, how neat my dad worked for Coca-Cola.

The early method of natural gas production entailed heating coal to get the gas from it (creating coke as a byproduct). The process also generated “coal tar” which, as it sounds, is gooey and useless.

They would store this stuff in tanks underground where over the years it would leak in the the environment. Former coal gasification sites are some of the messiest to clean up today.

Joel, so did my dad for 40 Years in the meter shop on second and flanders. The gas company produced Coke out in the little burg of Linnton on St. Helens Road. My Dad took me out there while they were still producing the stuff. People would burn the briquets in their furnaces if they had basements, or woodstoves in their living rooms for heat. the guys would pour the coke into burlap bags and would load them onto flatbeds and deliver them maybe once a month to customers. by the time they got out to our place in Errol Heights the guys would be entirely black. pretty scary for a little kid! i dont r if my parents ever talked about how dangerous this crap was, i only know we never would have thought to burn them in our fireplace. When the company switched over to natural gas it was a miraculous transition Gasco was and still is a great company to work for and to do business with. my Dad loved the Company and they loved him. We always looked forward to their annual picnic they put on at Blue Lake, Oaks Park, Lake Merwin, or elsewhere. the company considered their employees job 1 He probably knew your Dad, whenever he worked for Gasco. he knew everyone.

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