Saturday, February 20, 2010

Newcastle IR Project Part 1

Newcastle, as it's name implies (taken from the City of Newcastle on Tyne, the famed coal mining city in England), was another important coal mining town in the early history of Washington State. The town was second only to Black Diamond in coal production in the state. Coal was mined in the region from the 1880's until 1963, though large scale production ended in the 1930's. Like Black Diamond and Franklin, it was a company town, orignally owned by the Oregon Improvement Company, which also owned Franklin (Black Diamond was founded by the Black Diamond Coal Company, which had previously mined near Nortonville, CA, before moving to the Pacific Northwest), which later sold both towns to the Pacific Coast Company when OIC went bankrupt. PCC also owned Black Diamond. The coal mining area is now largely a part of King County's Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park.
Ford Slope IR
The Ford Slope Mine was the largest producer of the Newcastle area, and operated from 1906 to 1926. The shaft is 1740 feet deep.
Ford Slope Fan House IR
This is the remnants of one of two fanhouses that served the Ford Slope mine. The fanhouse provided fresh air for the miners, dispersing dangerous gasses within the mine.
Mineshaft IR
This is an airshaft that was part of a mine in the #3 seam. I believe this shaft was part of the first mine at Newcastle. The airshaft provided an intake for the ventilation system.
No. 4 Seam Airshaft IR
This is the airshaft for another mine in the #4 seam.

Stay tuned for the next installment in the Newcastle IR Project!

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