WILLIAMSON COALFIELD

Some coalfield maps call this region the West Virginia portion of the Thacker and Kenova Coalfields. In fact Norfolk-Southern still refers to the area as their "Thacker District." But mining historian Phil Conley (and the state of West Virginia) called it all the Williamson Coalfield, and so will I. Whatever you call the area, it contains high quality Kanawha Formation coal seams like the 5 Block, Cedar Grove, Hernshaw, and the Alma. Large scale mining began before World War I, and continues today. At one time Mingo County was one of the top five coal mining counties in the eastern United States, but I don't know if that is still true. The quality of the coal, excellent between Iaeger and Kermit, descends with the Big Sandy River through Wayne County. Like the Pocahontas Coalfield to the south, the Williamson Coalfield was the domain of the Norfolk & Western Railway, who maintained a large rail yard and repair shops at Williamson. Even in the 21st Century the yard and shops are an important asset of N&W descendent Norfolk-Southern.


TOWNS AND SUB-REGIONS:

BORDERLAND

CHATTAROY

CINDERELLA

LITWAR

MATEWAN

PANTHER

RAGLAND

RED JACKET

STONE MTN. CAMP

MISC


SOUTHERN WV COALFIELDS


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