We were undergoing winter survival training and were camped in a tent in the snow at Ft. Drum at 28 below zero F, trying to keep a coal stove working. The stove would get so hot you could not get near it and then we would be fighting to keep it lit. Never did figure it out. I like wood much better.
Anthracite stoves are difficult to get used to; hard to start and hard to keep going. Once you get the knack, you're a convert. Coal users pride themselves on getting into the one match club. Lighting the fire with one match and keeping it going all season. We used to go skiing for the day in the Catskills (from Long Island) and return to a going coal fire if you banked it just right. Then there's the problem of ash disposal. You'd be surprised how mush ash is produced by a coal stove. For the ins and outs of burning coal, visit the forum.... http://nepacrossroads.com/
I used to visit Camp Drum in the summer back int the 70's to fire 155mm towed howitzers from the 187th out of Brooklyn. If I remember correctly, you have 2 seasons, winter and the 4th of July.