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The Story of The Underground Miners

The Underground Miners are a team of avid history and adventure enthusiasts who realize the rich history of the Anthracite Region. Though the last deep mines in these areas shut down mainly long ago, there is already little evidence of them remaining on the surface. Reclamation and development have destroyed most major points of local heritage mainly in the northern field, though it is still evident in most areas to the trained eye. The Underground Miners set out almost daily to document as many of these sites as possible before they are all lost. Coal companies, for the most part, were very hard on their employees. At the time of their closing many people of the valleys were happy to see them shut down and the collieries torn down almost as if a curse had been lifted from their shoulders. Now, however, their children and grandchildren may look back into history and wonder, What happened to the mines my relatives worked in and, Why wasn’t more preserved for historical purposes? Our underground work consists of documenting different mining methods and items left underground, untouched and forgotten since the close of the deep mining operation. Such items could include coal cars, electric mine locomotives, internal hoists, vertical shafts and elevator cages, hospitals, offices and mine workings. In some cases the Underground Miners Restoration Team have gone so far to remove old mining artifacts from deep inside mines and buried in waste coal and slate piles to bring them back to life just as they were years ago. The Underground Miners have contacted Archbald Borough to acquire the old Gravity Slope buildings to turn into an anthracite technology museum. Now part of the UGM team is on the committee to restore and use these buildings as home for our mining artifacts. Our most ambitious project is the total restoration of a Whitcomb electric storage battery locomotive that came from a mine north of Carbondale. As more people look back and wonder what happened to their heritage, we try to enlighten them with our photographs and histories of many mining sites of the valleys through our website, our presentations, and also by providing first hand experience to those willing and able via our tours. The Underground Miners have been featured in several local newspaper interviews and stories. They have also been on the local news many times discussing abandoned mine dangers, and given accounts of their experiences. The UGM team has even been featured in a film on black lung disease. The Underground Miners team of avid mine researchers and historians gladly give presentations about 4 or 5 times a year to different organizations and willingly answer any questions the public have. As you can see the UGM team is very dedicated and is currently working on becoming a non-profit group. They are in the studio putting together a documentation of their story with the hundreds of hours of high quality video they have shot over the past years. Thanks for visiting our website and enjoy looking back into our past.

A side note from Chris: When we first started undergroundminers.com in 2002 with our three mines, we had no idea it would be such a hit. It has grown so much because of the people who view this site. Without so many of you e-mailing us the locations of some of the places we’ve been, we wouldn’t be able to bring you so much great stuff! We just wanted to say thanks and check back soon. We are always going on new trips and are constantly updating the site.

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© 2005 Underground Miners