ITMANN

Itmann was opened in 1918 by the mighty Pocahontas Fuel Co. It was named after the president of the company, Issac T. Mann. The Itmann mine closed in 1928, but was reopened twenty years later. During the 1950s and '60s it was the most productive mine in West Virginia. By that time Consolidation Coal had purchased Pocahontas Fuel Co. In the 1980s Island Creek Coal Co. was mining in Pocahontas No. 3 at Itmann, employing around 500 miners. The mines are now closed, however.

Itmann WV Company Store
This photo of the cut stone company store illustrates why it is on the National Register of Historic Places. The Pocahontas Fuel Co. office was on the left side of the structure, with a breezeway in the center. (Apr. 2007 image by author)

Itmann WV coal camp
Miners homes built by the Pocahontas Fuel Company.(Sep. 2001 image by author)


These larger company houses are simalar to the ones the Pocahontas Fuel built in Bishop. They may actually date from the 1948 reopening of the Itmann mine. (Apr. 2007 image by author)

coal company houses
Yet another style of coal company houses. (Dec. 2014 image by author)

Itmann West Virginia company houses
These Cape Cod style company houses along Route 10 were probably a "Bosses Row" for foremen and managers. (Dec. 2014 image by author)

Itmann UMWA union hall
Former UMWA hall, although an Itmann resident told me that it was originally a school. (Apr. 2007 image by author)

Itmann coal prep plant
The preparation plant at Itmann - now gone. (Image courtesy VT ImageBase, housed and operated by Digital Library and Archives, University Libraries; scanning by Digital Imaging, Learning Technologies, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University)

Itmann West Virginia coal mine
Another vintage view of the huge Itmann preparation plant. (Image courtesy of West Virginia and Regional History Collection, West Virginia University Libraries)

Pocahontas Fuel Company Itmann WV
The company store was still being maintained at the time of this photo because there was a homeless shelter in the mine office side of the structure. (Apr. 2007 image by author)

Itmann Company Store
A few years later I visited Itmann to find the homeless shelter gone and the company store falling into a dangerous state of decay. Note the hole in the roof. (Dec. 2014 image by author)

Itmann coal company store
Inside the former store debris is strewn about and it appears to have been ransacked. (Dec. 2014 image by author)


Looking at the front of the store through a breezeway entrance. (Dec. 2014 image by author)


A view through a breezeway opening of the side of the office in the internal court yard. (Dec. 2014 image by author)


The owner of the company store, politician Billy Wayne Bailey, is evidently not maintaining the historic strucure at all. (Dec. 2014 image by author)


Detail of a window on the Itmann company store. (Dec. 2014 image by author)

Itmann West Virginia
Even the gas station across the street is dilapidated. (Dec. 2014 image by author)


The door to the former coal company office (and also homeless shelter) was adjar and I looked in. (Dec. 2014 image by author)


Some site stabilization is needed at the Itmann company store before it is too late. I have seen too many former company stores in West Virgina descend into ruination over the years. This one is really special and deserves to be preserved. It seems like the only company store anyone cares about is the one in Whipple, W.Va. (and for a while the one in Ashland, W.Va. ). (Dec. 2014 image by author)


(Dec. 2014 image by author)

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