The Turncock controlled a valve either filling the watertank or drawing water off to fill the locomotive boiler. The tank itself dates to 1874 when the LVRR built a new "high grade" from Raven Run to Centralia on its Mahanoy Division, replacing the old "low grade" along Big Mine Run. The original was described as 'swampy' and it passed directly through the coal breakers at the Centralia and Continental Collieries. When Freck's Centralia Colliery breaker burned in 1872, it effectively stopped all traffic along the LVRR from Mount Carmel. The railroad engineers designed a work around while their subsidiary coal company began a major re-development of the abandoned colliery - a project that would take almost 4 years. The new rail line construction proceeded much faster.
It took advantage of an existing branch line that climbed the ridge to the "Reno Colliery" near Aristes which became the new main line to the ridge crest, and from there a steep descent was graded back down into Centralia.