Forgotten Corners: Exploring Abandoned Places in West Virginia

Forgotten Corners: Exploring Abandoned Places in West Virginia

The Appeal of Leaving Due to its difficult geography and lengthy history, West Virginia has left behind a mosaic of abandoned locations, each with a unique history of prosperity and decay.

These once-bustling places now serve as historical monuments, providing a unique window into the lives that formerly occupied them. Take an adventure through West Virginia’s eerily gorgeous abandoned areas, where mystery and history converge.

Lake Shawnee Amusement Park

One of the most notable abandoned locations in all of West Virginia is Lake Shawnee. Conley Sindow built a circle swing on a modest piece of property in the 1920s.

He had the idea to construct a large entertainment park, but he had no idea that he was doing so on top of an Indian burial mound.

Things went bad almost as soon as the park opened. Along with bizarre sensations and unusual sightings, a young boy drowned in the neighboring lake and a little girl died on the swing ride. Six visitors perished in all when the park was opening.

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Red Ash Potters Field

One of the several tiny mining settlements that dot the New River Gorge region in the early 1900s was Red Ash. Red Ash grew during the same period as the more well-known mines at Kaymoor and Nuttalburg were operating.

Regrettably, Red Ash experienced a series of fatal incidents that ultimately resulted in the mines closing and the community being forgotten.

On March 6, 1900, in the afternoon, a naturally occurring stream of trapped methane gas inside the mine was ignited by a miner’s headlamp. This triggered powerful explosions inside the mine that also blew up coal dust and powder kegs.

Exploring Abandoned Places in West Virginia

That day, 46 miners had lost their lives in all. In a few five years, another calamity occurred, with a significantly higher death toll. Once more, the methane gas was ignited with such intensity that the mine’s entrance was destroyed. That day, 114 people lost their lives.

The purpose of the potters field was to inter those bodies. A large number of the tombstones lack text or are indecipherable.

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Nuttallburg Coal Tipple

In the early 1900s, Nuttallburg was a tiny but prosperous coal village. It was initially established in 1870 when John Nuttall started buying land nearby after learning that there was coal below.

The recently constructed Chesapeake & Ohio Railway was prepared to transport coal throughout the nation in 1873.

One of the biggest coal mining communities along West Virginia’s New River Gorge, Nuttalburg expanded swiftly. It would be a quiet, working village until 1920, when a notorious mining owner attempted to seize control of the operations.

The National Park Service saved and preserved Nuttallburg, in contrast to a great number of other riverbank coal villages. You can now explore the coal tipple and discover a number of deserted buildings and ruins strewn across the forest.

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Thurmond West Virginia

One of the best-preserved ghost towns in the Midwest is Thurmond, a sleepy little community in West Virginia that borders the New River Gorge.

The effects of the Great Depression on the local economy gradually destroyed this once prosperous mining town. Over time, Thurmond was gradually forgotten as new technologies like the vehicle and diesel engine locomotives gained popularity.

Exploring Abandoned Places in West Virginia

The National Historic Society is in charge of protecting this village today, and anyone can visit for free. One of West Virginia’s best-preserved abandoned sites is still Thurmond.

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Glen Jean School

In addition to being an elementary school, Glen Jean was formerly a hospital. One of the rare buildings from the days when Glen Jean was only a little mining town is this school.

Considering that this school was constructed in 1925, its exterior is still in very outstanding condition. Up until 1997, when it was converted to offices, Glen Jean was still in use as a school.

There are rumors circulating about this property being haunted, suggesting that it was once a hospital and that a murder occurred there many years ago. This building will soon be transformed into a community center by the town.

To Conclude

Abandoned sites in West Virginia are not merely unsettling windows into the past; they are also powerful reminders of the state’s rich mining heritage and the tenacity of its people. Every location has a tale to tell, from the terrible events at Red Ash to the enigmatic beginnings of Lake Shawnee.

Adventurers looking for a distinct mix of mystery and history will be enthralled with West Virginia’s deserted locations. Thus, gather your curiosity and get ready to travel back in time.