2014 Mining History Association Tour


Historic Coal and Coking Camps - Starkville,
Cokedale, Boncarbo, Berwind Canyon,
Hastings, and Ludlow
Tour Leaders: Steve Hart and Shannon Osterhout
June 15, 2014

 

 

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When the coking coal in the Cokedale Mine was exhausted, mines at Boncarbo, a seven miles up Reilly Canyon, supplied the coke ovens.


Shannon Osterhout discusses how the geology of the coal beds changes as the tour proceeds northward from Cokedale to Boncarbo and then to the Berwind Canyon coal camps and Hastings.

Several of the residential buildings in Boncarbo continue to be used; however, there are no longer any commercial establishments.

Another Boncarbo home appears to have been abandoned.

 

Berwind Canyon was the location of many famous coal camps.  Today, only ruins remain of Tollerberg, Berwind, and Tabasco.  It is difficult to tell where one camp stops and another starts. These towns and many like them were central to the labor disputes that led to the Colorado Coalfield War and the Ludlow Massacre.

 

The remains of dozens of industrial and residential structures are present throughout the canyon.  The quality of the stonework above indicates that an important building was located at the top of the stairway.


The Berwind Jail was built to last.

The railroad extended into the canyon to transport the coal from the many mines, tipples, and cleaning facilities.  Only the concrete foundations remain.

 

Photo Credits: Henry Djerlev, Johnny and Dawn Johnsson, Mike and Pat Kaas, Bob Spude, John Stewart

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