Thanks to Terry over at Mid-Atlantic Urban Exploration group for the coal piers location, I had a hoot. This is a 7 exposure hand held HDR, at about 10:30 am. Click on image for a larger view.
“On the river at the line of East Huntington Street
A last vestige of the once-great Richmond Coal Wharves, Pier 18 is noted by boaters and shore-strollers for its elevated rail line, which ends in a up-turned hook like an elf shoe or ski jump.
Extending 875 feet into the river, Pier 18 carries two railroad tracks and was used for the loading of coal and ore. As recently as 1968, the pier sprouted a six-story steel tower called a McMyler side car dumper, which appears to have been demolished.
The now-defunct Richmond Coal Wharves, developed primarily by the Reading Railroad, encompass a mile of shoreline and 12 abandoned piers. It was once the primary terminal for Pennsylvania vast coal output.
In 1981, a Historic Resource Protection Plan by the Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission described elements of the Richmond Coal Wharves site as candidates for historic status, including piers like Pier 18.”
Independence Seaport Museum
Ameriport (a guide to the Port of Philadelphia), 1968
Historic Resource Protection Plan, Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission, 1981
This what it used to look like back in the day.