The Berwind family was experienced in building large scale coal mining camps in Western Pennsylvania under the name Berwind-White Coal Company. When they decided to expand into Southern West Virginia they called their company New River and Pocahontas Consolidated Coal Company. N.R.& P.C.C.Co. No. 1 and No. 2 mines were located at Berwind, a company town that the coal barons named for themselves. A store, bank, theatre, post office, clubhouse, Union Church, and Catholic Church were also constructed. The first coal was shipped from Berwind in 1906. At some point in history coke ovens were constructed in Berwind. In 1961 Pocahontas Fuel Company became the operators of the Berwind operation, and they closed it down for good in 1967. Today the tipple site is totally reclaimed.

New River & Pocahontas Consolidated Coal Company also operated the Canebrake mine down the road, as well as the large Kaymoor, Minden, and Layland mines in the New River Coalfield.

Learn more about Berwind at the "Road To Berwind" website


The Berwind tipple in the middle of the 20th Century. (1956 image courtesy of James Jack, Jr.)

Overall view of the Berwind coal camp. (Feb. 2005 image by author)

This style of coal camp housing is the same that U.S. Steel was using several miles away in some of their coal camps such as Elbert. (Feb. 2005 image by author)

Coal miners' homes along the railroad track. (Feb. 2005 image by author)

The largest house in Berwind, WV was the doctor's house. (Feb. 2005 image by author)

Because Berwind was one of the largest and most developed company towns it even had its own bank, which was organized in 1910. The Masonic Lodge used the upper floor for years. Now they enjoy the use of the whole building. (Feb. 2005 image by author)

The bank, along with the company offices and company store, a long time ago. (Image source forgotten)

Berwind had a much larger school than most company towns. (Feb. 2005 image by author)

This church was built right against a company house. (Feb. 2005 image by author)

To honor the coal and rail history in Berwind the citizens have placed this Norfolk & Western caboose on display in their town. (Feb. 2005 image by author)



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