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Posts Tagged ‘Franklin #7’

Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, October 3, 1906

September shows big increase for Pacific Coast Co. despite fact that working days were somewhat reduced

The Pacific Coast Company’s mines during September produced approximately 74,000 tons of coal, the largest output the company has had in a single month during its history. September beat the August record, despite the fact that there were three less working days during the month just closed. In August the company’s mines produced 71,700 tons and in July there was produced 67,500 tons. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, May 13, 1904

General Manager Ford ends negotiations in southern city

J.C. Ford

J.C. Ford

Rich coal deposits on C. & P. S. Ry. transferred for $1,000,000

SAN FRANCISCO, Friday, May 13 — J.C. Ford, general manager of the Pacific Coast Company, has been in this city for some days negotiating with President H.H. Taylor for the purchase of the Black Diamond coal mines on Puget Sound.

This afternoon at the office of the Black Diamond Company a representative of The Times was told that the deal had been closed. The price named was $1,000,000. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, May 1, 1904

Deal the largest ever consummated in the State of Washington

Million dollars to be paid by purchasers for the fuel fields

The Black Diamond coal mines are to be sold to the Pacific Coast Company, $1,000,000 being paid for the properties. Negotiations for the acquirement of the coal lands and workings, which have been in progress for nearly four months, are practically completed and the formal transfer will be made within a few days.

This is the largest deal ever made in this state involving coal lands, and will give the Pacific Coast Company a total production of 2,500 tons daily. (more…)

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Originally published in the Pacific Coast Bulletin, March 29, 1922

By Geo. Watkin Evans, consulting coal mining engineer, Seattle

George Watkin Evans (1876-1951), 1924 Courtesy Seattle and Environs

George Watkin Evans, 1924

Pacosco, as it is now called, was formerly Franklin. This district was first opened on the banks of Green River on the McKay Coal Seam about 1885. The railroad was extended from Black Diamond in order to develop this coal area.

Originally, Franklin Mine was opened by a drift driven on the McKay Coal at bunker level above the old railroad grade. Later a water level gangway was driven from the edge of Green River and the coal hoisted up an incline on the surface and dumped over the same tipple as that from the upper level. Later a slope was sunk on another bed which underlies the McKay and all of the coal below the original bunker level was hauled through this opening.

Numerous slopes were sunk at Franklin and also one shaft was developed. Most of the coal was mined from the McKay Bed but some was also mined from two underlying beds, the Number Twelve and the Number Ten. (more…)

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Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, February 25, 2014

By Bill Kombol

This remarkable photo shows an excavated coal seam in the Franklin Hill area east of Black Diamond during the late 1940s.

This remarkable photo shows an excavated coal seam in the Franklin Hill area east of Black Diamond during the late 1940s.

Franklin was a coal mining town founded in 1885 near the Green River Gorge. Mining progressed rapidly following extension of the Columbia & Puget Sound Railroad through Maple Valley, past Black Diamond, and to this remote town site.

Underground mining continued on a large scale until depressed coal prices at the end of World War I caused the last significant mine in Franklin to shut down. Most residents left though a few remained behind by farming or traveling to jobs elsewhere. During World War II the Franklin No. 7 mine reopened, but closed right after the war.

Using surplus heavy equipment from the war, a new breed of miners began surface coal extraction as shown in this photo, the Franklin #12, better known as the Fulton seam, was mined from the surface over 100 feet deep. The two cables near the top of the photo were used to operate a drag line which pulled loose coal from where the lone miner is standing below.

The Fulton seam, like most in the series of seventeen Franklin coal seams, dipped at a significant angle which complicated mining efforts.

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Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, January 28, 2014

By Bill Kombol

Mine No. 7 opened in 1893 and produced coal until 1907. It was later reopened during World War II, closing for good in 1946.

Mine No. 7 opened in 1893 and produced coal until 1907. It was later reopened during World War II, closing for good in 1946.

This impressive photo shows Franklin mine No. 7 on February 19, 1902. The mine was located on the north slope of Franklin Hill, about one mile from the main town of Franklin.

It was served by the Bruce Branch of the Columbia & Puget Sound Railroad, which paralleled the Green River Gorge Road and ended just south of Lake Twelve.

The mine opened in 1893. It was sunk 3,185 feet along a slope with a 30° pitch, with coal extracted from eight underground levels. It reached a depth of 1,046 feet, or about 150 feet below sea level.

The mine produced coal until 1907 when it was shut down and the rails taken up. During the early years of World War II, the mine was re-opened by Pacific Coast Coal Co. and later operated by the Strain Coal Co. The mine was permanently closed by Pacific Coast Coal on August 1, 1946.

This Curtis and Romans photo, number 1050, comes courtesy of the Washington State Historical Society in Tacoma.

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Originally published in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, November 11, 1901

Distressing accident at the Pacific Coast Company’s works — Jacob Rose is supposed to have lost his life

Mine No. 7 produced coal until 1907 when it was shut down and the rails taken up. During the early years of World War II, the mine was re-opened by Pacific Coast Coal Co. and later operated by the Strain Coal Co.

Mine No. 7 produced coal until 1907 when it was shut down and the rails taken up. During the early years of World War II, the mine was re-opened by Pacific Coast Coal Co. and later operated by the Strain Coal Co.

Flames were discovered in Mine No. 7 of the Pacific Coast Co., at Franklin at 4 o’clock yesterday morning. The miners at work, with the exception of one man, fled to safety.

Jacob Rose, the unfortunate miner, is thought to have run in the wrong direction, and if he did, the mine officials say he must be dead.

Rose is unmarried and has worked in the mine for the past five or six years. He had the reputation of being an industrious workman.

Where the fire started

The fire started in the fourth breast of the eight level of the mine about 4 o’clock yesterday morning. A canvas stretched across the breast became ignited in some inconceivable way and soon the flames spread to the timbers in the tunnel, and to the loose coal strewn about. (more…)

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If you’d like to learn more about the coal mining town of Franklin during its peak, 1885 until 1919, we’ve got you covered. Here you’ll find a list of web resources (and a couple of books and a thesis, too) that will quickly get you up to speed.

Top works of the Franklin mine.

Top works of the Franklin mine.

The next Franklin tours are tentatively scheduled for 2021. Come to the Black Diamond Museum at noon to sign up and for orientation. We’ll be leaving at 10 a.m. for Franklin (about three miles). A $5 donation per adult is suggested. Seniors, veterans, and children under 12 are free.

Bring boots, an umbrella, and an imagination. (more…)

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