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 Old Forge Miners Memorial

See if your family name is on the list. Was your father or grand father a coal miner? Was he killed in the mines? Do you know how it happened or the date he died?  The memorial list the names and information on 514 Anthracite coal miners killed in the mines under Old Forge.



Our Intent is to preserve the vanishing history and heritage of the coal mines, colliers, and breakers that were located in Old Forge Pennsylvania for future generations, and  to gather all the  information into one location

Help Support the Coal Miners Stamp. Contact the post office or write your congressman and local representatives.


All Web Site Information is provided by Old Forge Coal Mine Inc. Carl Orechovsky Sibley, Old Forge, Pa.

LAST UPDATE: 02/22/2014  

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Looking for the history of Duryea Pa.???   Go to: www.duryeapa.com



First miner to die in Old Forge: James Reese Feb. 15, 1872, Pyne shaft.

First mine disaster in Old Forge Sept. 28, 1897. 5 miners killed at the Dunn mine, Rendham, Jermyn Coal Co.  Bad air from a fire in the mine.  

Take a trip underground at the Lackawanna Coal Mine at McDade Park, Scranton.

Lackawanna Coal Mine Tour Scranton Pa.

Pa. Anthracite Heritage Museum McDade Park Scranton Pa.

Old Forge Pa.      Known as Draketown in 1805. Began as Old Forge Township in 1871. Incorporated as Old Forge Borough 1899. Location:   41*22' 11" North, 75*44' 18" West. Population: 8600 Sq Mi: 3.5 Lackawanna County. Pennsylvania.

Help us out, send a Buck to cover our expenses. Make a check to Old Forge Coal Mine,       mail to : 1214 Lori Lane Old Forge Pa. 18518


A new section is being compiled for area residents past and current to send in items of historical interest for our readers.

Items can be sent to our 1214 Lori Lane, Old Forge ,Pa. 18518 address or by e-mail. Please include your phone number and address for verification and return of items.

 Dunn Colliery Disaster 1897


 Miners Poem

Mining terms used in Old Forge

From the Sanborn Insurance maps of 1914, Old Forge had:                 7 Schools                                    2 Fire Companies                        9 Churches                                 6 Warehouses                             163 Stores                                40 Bars/Saloons                        26 Hotels                                    1 Sawmill                                   9 Factories                              306 Barns/Stables                        5 Collieries                              1,686 Homes                               1 Indoor Shooting Range




THE HISTORY of AVOCA  PA. (Pleasant Valley)





Welcome to the Coal Mine History of Old Forge Pa.


Dedicated to all the men and boys who gave their lives mining coal in Old Forge Pennsylvania.






The Northern Coal Field Miners rode their last trip of cars underground. May they now find the peace and serenity they never had as an Anthracite Coal Miner.



ANTHRACITE LABOR WARS by Robert P. Wolensky and William A. Hastie SR. Available from Barns & Nobel, and Anthracite Heritage Museum. $24.95.

Rails Between Dunmore and Jessup. The Delaware, Lackawanna & Western's Winton Branch.                 by Frank P. Adams. Available from Amazon.com for $12.95.



By Carl Orechovsky

     The brutal coal barons of the 1920's are still oppressing coal mine workers in Lackawanna County, only now they are known as the "Lackawanna County Commissioners". Our three Commissioners, Corey O'Brien, Jim Wansacz, and Patrick O'Malley continue to oppose any pay increases for the three maintenance/tour guides who assist the foreman at the Lackawanna County Coal Mine Tour, 190 Slope, McDade Park, Scranton, Pa.

     All three employees are paid only $8.85 hour, and listed as part time, seasonal, tour guides, receiving no overtime, no holiday pay for working holidays while the park surface maintenance personnel get holidays off, and no benefits, even though we worked mostly 40 hour weeks in 2013. Numerous attempts to have our status upgraded to full time maintenance/guides with the same pay and benefits as the parks surface maintenance workers have fallen on uncaring, deaf ears. And as of February 18, our hours were cut to 15 hours a week.

     We are in the process of trying to join SEIU 668, the service union representing the other full time park surface maintenance workers and office secretaries, who are paid an average of $33,000.00 a year, for cutting grass and raking leaves, and enjoying the fresh air and sunshine. The County is fighting the union.

     The Anthracite coal mine tour takes about one hour in the Moffat Coal Co's 190 Slope mine, which was last worked in 1968. The visitors are taken down a 1500 foot long slope in a 28 person enclosed FMC Corp man-trip car, lowered by a 1972 Superior Lidgerwood Mundy Corp hoist, to the loading platform in the Clark vein of coal. The slope is 1500 foot long with the greatest pitch being 24 degrees, and at this pitch, 700 feet down, the car and cables make the first of two 45 degree right turns. As a tour guide we take the group on a walking tour through the gangways, chambers, rock tunnels, two other veins of coal, and an airlock, before returning to the Clark vein loading platform. Along the tour we educate the visitors in how the miners survived and worked below the surface.

     Our additional duties include: cleaning the toilets and restrooms, vacuuming the carpets of the ticket/gift shop and hoist building, cutting grass in the summer, shoveling snow in the winter, and performing daily and yearly maintenance down in the mine such as replacing 20 to 25 oak props, rib and boardwalk planks, track and electrical replacements, and on days when we get over 250 school students, Ill assist as a tour guide with the foreman taking over the hoist operation.

     I am one of the three so called seasonal/part time workers at the Coal Mine Tour. My main job is the weekday hoist engineer, responsible for the hoist, cable, and visitors man-trip car's daily inspection and maintenance, lowering the group to the Clark loading platform and safely raising the group back to the surface.

     Last season I hoisted about 25,000 of the 35,500 visitors that took the coal mine tour, and I worked 41 forty-hour weeks out of our 45 week season. This is not part time, but full time work, 8 hour days. All this for an average pay of $16,000.00 a year. With our time cut to 15 hours a week our yearly pay is reduced to below the poverty level to $5,442.00.

     You, as a coal miner, or researcher can help in two ways. First, add the coal mine tour to your summer vacation schedule this year. We are open seven days a week from April 2, to November 30. Second, voice your disapproval of the mine workers wage discrimination by calling Corey O'Brien about at 570-963-6800. Or, send a letter to the Lackawanna County Commissioners office, mail to: Lackawanna County Commissioners, 200 Adams Ave, 6th Floor, Scranton Pa. 18503, or e-mail to: wansaczj@lackawannacounty.org ,and omalleyp@lackawannacounty.org. Thanks for your help and hope to see you all this season.


Carl Orechovsky, info@oldforgecoalmine.com


 Mine Map of Old Forge.                         Several researchers asked for a map showing locations of the mines of Old Forge. This street map has all the Breakers, Shafts, Slopes, Drifts, and Air Fans marked on it. Click on the map to enlarge it


                             Hayna or No! Dontcha ?

We are an IRS 501 (c) (3) TAX EXEMPT charitable organization, incorporated in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as a non-profit corporation, Pa. 


 Who we are: We are a group of diverse researchers dedicated to the preservation of Anthracite Coal Mining history and the preservation of our heritage for future generations. We rely on donations and grants for office supplies and funds to conduct research, restore, and acquire coal mining equipment.

What we do: Research and post the history of coal mining in Old Forge, and the Anthracite Coal Field, search for the names of miners killed in the mines of Old Forge, educate our new generation about their heritage. Search for hard to find publications, reports, manuals, stories about coal mining and local area history. We are host to the Anthracite Archives, an easy to use, on line repository for all the Anthracite coal mining information and history we can locate.

What is in our future: Research and create additional pages for the industries, churches, history, and schools of Old Forge. Provide an educational display about coal mining and history at local events. Rebuild all the mine cars on display at the Lackawanna County Coal mine, McDade Park, Scranton.  Assist other non-profit groups with similar interest.

How you can help: Please Send a donation. Checks can be made to "Old Forge Coal Mine", mail to: Old Forge Coal Mine, 1214 Lori Lane, Old Forge, Pa. 18518. With the state budget severely cut we are in desperate need of funding resources and supplies.


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nlt Northern Light Technologies Improves Tour Guide Cap Lighting at the Lackawanna County Coal Mine Tour, #190 Slope

     Rich Humber, North American Channel Manager, provided a Polaris 10 station charger and Polaris cap lamps for the operation at the coal mine tour. This donation came about from contacts made at the Bluefield Coal Mining Expo in Bluefield West Virginia by the mines hoist engineer Carl Orechovsky. We are extremely grateful to Mr. Humber and nlt for the upgrade to our lamps as the older Koehler lamps were in need of replacements.

     The Lackawanna County Coal Mine Tour is unique as to taking visitors down a 1,300 foot long slope to the Clark Vein of Anthracite Coal at a depth of 250 feet underground. The one hour walking tour covers almost one half mile through gangways, chambers, rock tunnels, and airlocks to show visitors how the miners worked to bring coal to the surface. The tour starts off in the Clark Vein and passes through the Dunmore No1 and Dunmore No 2 Veins of Coal. The #190 Slope was last worked by the Moffat Coal Co in 1968. 

     The mine tour seasons starts April 2 and runs seven days a week till November 29th.




Please feel free to contact us. We are a not for profit web site,  looking for any and all donations Including pictures, letters, anything historical for our web page. Thank you.

If you have anything to add, or see something that needs to be corrected, or want to contact us, use the following address: info@oldforgecoalmine.com





List of FORGOTTEN COAL CO NAMES that operated in Old Forge



We are always looking for any information regarding the coal mines in the Old Forge area. Please contact us. info@oldforgecoalmine.com


Our thanks to Harald and Caroline DeStefano of DeStefano Computer,   Glen Lion, Pa.  for help in creating this web site. Please visit them at: destefanocomputer.net


From the report: U.S. Bureau of Mines, Bulletin 517, Barrier Pillars in the Lackawanna Basin of the Northern Coal Field. 1952:

Barrier Pillars: 93       Mines Affected: 48       Total Length: 89 Miles 

Underground Pools: 21        Gal. Water Held: 10 Billion

Estimated Water pumped to surface between 1944-1948: 44 Billion Gallons.


New Books: ANTHRACITE LABOR WARS by Robert P. Wolensky and William A. Hastie Sr. available from Barns & Nobel, and Anthracite Heritage Museum. $24.95


Your history is out there, open your eye's and look, you may be amazed at what you might discover in your own town.....




 A  column has been added between name and date. The Two letter designation is for the mine or colliery the miner died at.     514 miners have been found.

Index to list of Miners Killed:

O1-Old Forge 1, O2-Old Forge 2, J1-Jermyn 1 & Dunn, J2 Jermyn Mudtown, JE-all Jermyn combined, LA-Lawrence, WA-William A., AU-Austin, SB-Sibley, PY-Pyne, RU-Russell, CO-Corey, MO-Morgan, CH-Carbon Hill.



Austin Heights; Austin was the daughter of the mine owner.

Western Corners; Rural farm area Milwaukee and Oak St area of town.

Barbertown; Mr. Lewis was a barber in the patch.

Babylon; Babb family operated a foundry in the patch.

Bush Patch;?

Connell's Patch; William Connell a coal operator.

Goose Alley; Farmer had large flocks of geese.

Lawrenceville; Lawrence was the maiden name of W. Connell's wife.

Rendham; Town in England where John J. Jermyn was born.

Rosemont; ?

Sibley; Brother-in-law of Judge McClure, of Elliot McClure Coal Co.

Snyder's Patch ?

Italy Green; early Italian immigrants settled here.

Raytown; ?


Draketown; settled by the Drake family.

Carbon Hill; was the first large coal breaker in town.

Mudtown; Main Street, downtown areas.

Nickel Plate; Nickel Plate Slope.

Sparrowville; forest roost for sparrows along the Lackawanna river.

Worlds End; early name for Austin Heights, Sibley, Western Corners.

Little Jerusalem; first Jewish settlers.

Can you fill in the missing meanings ???????