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Coal & Coal Mining
History & Genealogy

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Coles County, Illinois
Featuring Coal Mining
      Coles County is a county located in the central part of the state of Illinois.
      39° 31' 13" N, 88° 13' 18" W
As of 2000, the population was 53,196 and in 2010 the population was 53,873.
The county seat is Charleston, Illinois.
Coles County was organized on December 25, 1830 from Clark and Edgar counties, and was named for the second governor of Illinois, Edward Coles (Governor from from 1822 to 1826).
      Coles County has twelve townships:
            Ashmore, Charleston, East Oakland, Humboldt, Hutton, Lafayette, Mattoon, Morgan, North Okaw, Paradise, Pleasant Grove, Seven Hickory
      Some of the cities, towns, villages and communities are :
Ashmore, Charleston, Humboldt, Lerna, Mattoon, Oakland

Embarras Coal Mine
The legal description lists this as :    Coles County - Township 14 North, Range 14 West, Section 8
A Slope Mine
Mine Name Operated By Years
Miracle Coal Mine   Energy Resource Development   circa 1987 - 1988
Embarras Coal Mine No. 1   Amco-Illinois Mining Company   circa 1988 - 1989
[Sources - Nos. 1 Index #1010]

Mattoon Coal Mine
The legal description lists this as :    Coles County - Mattoon -
Township 12 North, Range 7 East, Section 14
A Shaft Mine at a depth of 904 feet with a coal seam of 3½ feet in thickness.
Mine Name Operated By Years
Mattoon Coal Mine   Mattoon Mining Company   circa 1882 - 1883
Mattoon Coal Mine   Mattoon Coal and Mining Company   circa 1883 - 1885
Mattoon Coal Mine   Mattoon Mining Company   1886 - 1888
[Sources - Nos. 2, 3, 4, 5]
1884 Coal Report3
Mattoon Mining Company
      This shaft is located within the corporate limits of the city of Mattoon and on the line of the Peoria, Decatur and Evansville Railroad. The shaft is 90½ feet deep, the coal having an average thickness of 3½ feet. The coal is worked on the long-wall system, and the seam is very suitable for this kind of working, having a shale top, not too hard, and the bottom being fire clay, not too hard, and dry. The company employs on an average 70 miners daily during the year. As the coal is undermined, the weight of the roof breaks it down. This is the deepest shat in the State, but having been sunk by different parties the shaft is not well constructed. For 60 feet next to the top the shaft timbers had taken a swing in sinking, and the last time I was there, in July, I gave strict orders to have the top 60 feet retimbered -- that is; lined inside. The underground works were not in good condition, owing to the pump having been broken, and water having got into the workings. The company promised to have everything put in good shape. Notice has been served on the company to sink an escapement shaft within the time specified by law. The coal is hoisted by double engine, on second motion; engine, 16 x 30; 3 boilers each 40 inches by 22 feet; hoisting drum, 8 feet in diameter; ropes, 1¼ inch in diameter.
      Manager, Col. Weaver.
1885 Coal Report5 - Colliery in Coles County
Mattoon Coal and Mining Co.
      Considerable improvement has been made at this shaft during the year, both above and below. The return air-courses, when the present management took charge of the works, were nearly closed up; 30 cubic feet per man per minute was all the air that could be obtained with the fan. The air-courses have all been repaired and cleaned out, so that now there is over 100 feet of air per man. The hauling roads have been made wider, and the partings at the bottom of the shaft retimbered and made higher. The underground works are now in a tolerably fair condition. The company had some trouble in securing a site for an escapement shaft, but now the ground is secured and the company is sinking another hoisting shaft, to be used as an escapement. The shaft is going down at the intersection of the Illinois Central and Peoria, Decatur and Evansville railroads, and it will be pushed ahead until completed. Timbers 10 x 12 will be used for cribbing timbers. If much water is met with an inside lining of 8 x 10 timbers will be put in, with a puddling wall of 4 inches of Portland cement. It is the intention of the company to puddle all shaft water back.
      Jas. P. Cummings, Manager.

Sources :
1 Coal Mines in Illinois, Coles County
                Illinois State Geological Survey, 615 East Peabody Drive, Champaign, IL. 61820

2 Statistics of Coal Production in Illinois, 1883,
                A Supplemental Report of the State Bureau of Labor Statistics,
                by John S Lord, Secretary; Springfield, ILL: H. W. Rokker, Printer and Binder; 1883

3 Third Biennial Report, Bureau of Labor Statistics of Illinois, 1884
                Springfield, ILL; H. W. Roker, State Printer and Binder, 1884

4 Statistics of Coal in Illinois, 1885
                A Supplemental Report of the State Bureau of Labor Statistics
                Springfield, ILL.; H. W. Rokker, State Printer and Binder, 1885

5 Statistics of Coal in Illinois, 1887
                A Supplemental Report of the State Bureau of Labor Statistics
                Springfield, ILL.; H. W. Rokker, State Printer and Binder, 1887

Coal & Coal Mining in Illinois

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