News about The Va. Anthracite Coal & Railway

[Roanoke] Times, Volume 17, Number 39, 25 March 1902, pg. 10



The following House bills were passed:
To amend charter town of Cape Charles.
Requiring Richmond and Petersburg Electric Railroad to provide separate coaches for the races.
To amend charter of Richmond Traction Company.
To incorporate Virginia Anthracite Coal and Railway Company.

[Roanoke] Times, Volume 17, Number 62, 20 April 1902. pg. 20


Electric Line to Be Built from Christiansburg to Blacksburg.

(Special Dispatch to The Times.)

BLACKSBURG, VA., April 19.—The Democrats of this section are anxious now for the Constitution to be proclaimed. A large number have been asked the question: “Do you want the new Constitution left to the people or proclaimed?” Invariably the answer is “Proclaim it by all means so that we will soon find out who are and what is to rule us.”

It can be truthfully said that now as the Constitution has been changed that some Republicans would not care if it is proclaimed.

It is a fact, that the Virginia Anthracite Coal and Railway Company chartered by the last Legislature and whose charter goes into effect June the 1st will issue bonds to build an electric road from Christiansburg depot to this point and thence to the coal field in Brush mountain.

Richmond Dispatch, Volume 1902, Number 16086, 11 November 1902, pg. 7


Contract for Virginia Anthracite Coal and Railway Company’s Road.

RADFORD, VA., November 10.—(Special.)—Ingles & Simpson, civil engineers and railroad contractors, of Radford, have secured the contract for the location of the Virginia Anthracite Coal and Railway Company’s road from Christiansburg depot, on the Norfolk and Western railway, to Blacksburg, passing directly through the anthracite coal company’s valuable mines in Price’s mountain. The grading will be begun at once and the road pushed to completion with the utmost dispatch. Two hundred laborers are wanted, at good prices.

This road will pass through a region rich alike in agricultural and mineral wealth, and will aid materially the growth and upbuilding of Blacksburg.

Richmond Dispatch, Volume 1903, Number 16135, 9 January 1903, pg. 6


Virginia May Become an Anthracite Field.

The Virginia Anthracite Coal Company was chartered by Judge Wellford, of the City Circuit Court yesterday. The company is formed for the purpose of developing mining and timber lands with the right to purchase, lease or acquire otherwise, as much as fifty thousand acres of land at any one time in the State.

The capital stock is to be not less than $20,000, nor more than $400,000, to be divided into shares of the par value of $100 each. The principal office of the company is to be maintained in Richmond.

The officers who are to manage the concern for the first year are: President, L. S. Randolph, of Blacksburg, vice-president, W. J. Payne, of Richmond, and secretary and treasurer, D. C. Zollickoffer, of Richmond. C. E. Wingo and O. J. Sands, in addition to the officers indicated will constitute the board of directors for the first year.

[Roanoke] Times, Volume 17, Number 289, 13 January 1903, pg. 9


A Number Placed on Record in Office of Secretary of Commonwealth.

The following charters have been filed in the office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth:

The charters of the Bank of Manchester and the Virginia Anthracite Coal Company have also been filed.

[Richmond] Times Dispatch, Volume 1903, Number 16190, 15 March 1903, pg. 7


Railway to the Great Price Mountain Coal Mines Will Soon Be Completed.

(Special to The Times-Dispatch.)

CHRISTIANSBURG, VA., March 14.—The Virginia Anthracite Coal and Railway Company is now laying the steel on their line of railroad from this place to the great Price Mountain coal mines, a distance of five miles, and if the weather is favorable, will have the track laid by the last of this month, which will open up one of the richest coal sections in Virginia.

Several coal companies have been formed recently, which are buying up every acre of coal land obtainable, paying big prices, and the excitement runs high. A large number of buildings are going up rapidly at the mines, and it will be only a short time before one of the most prosperous mining villages in the State will be thriving in the midst of the coal center.

A number of Northern capitalists visited these mines last week and pronounced them to be equal to the finest anthracite mines in Pennsylvania. Heretofore these mines have been worked in the crudest manner, but the companies which have acquired them have made preparations to work them in the most modern and improved way, and it is safe to say that the output within the next six months will be enormous.

The railroad will be extended on to Blacksburg this spring, five miles beyond the mines, and the officials hope to have it completed by the time of the commencement at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute, in order that they may handle the great crowd which attends at that time.

One hears the prediction that Montgomery county is just entering upon a new era of material prosperity, and that the population of the county will double during the next decade.

[Richmond] Times Dispatch, Volume 1903, Number 16392, 11 November 1903, pg. 10


The Corporation commission granted the following charters yesterday:

Virginia Anthracite Coal Company, Richmond. W. J. Payne, president; D. C. Zollickoffer, secretary. Capital stock increased by amendment to $800,000.

Tazewell Republican, Volume 12, Number 52, 24 December 1903, pg. 4


Inexhaustible Supply of Natural Gas Underlies Price Mountain Coal Field.

Christiansburg, Va., December 22.--An explosion occurred at the Virginia Anthracite Coal Company’s mines, Price Mountain, yesterday, caused by the ignition of the damp by the miners’ lamps in which four persons were badly burned, but will likely recover.

It is the opinion of experts that there is an inexhaustible amount of natural gas and a vast amount of the best coal underlying the Brush and Price Mountain coal fields in this county, and the explosion yesterday seems to confirm that belief.

[Roanoke] Evening News, Volume 8, Number 72, 2 January 1904, pg. 2


Bright Prospects for Hard Coal Mines in Montgomery County.

John R Wilson, formerly of Scranton, now of New York, experts to sever his connection with the coal department of the D. L. & W. R. R. at the close of this month to take charge of the coal and railroad properties of the Virginia Anthracite Coal Company, and the Virginia Anthracite Coal and R. R. Co., located near Christiansburg., Montgomery county, Va. The breaker is now rapidly nearing completion, and from examinations of the slopes and gangways now opened in the mine, Prof. Wm. Griffith, of Scranton, Pa., places the amount of coal contained in the tracts owned in fee and under lease, at 42,000,000 tons. This seams are pitching and are remarkably free from slate. The coal is uniform, and of good free-burning quality. An analysis by prof. McGrath shows about 82 per cent. of fixed carbon, 10 per cent. of volatile combustible matter and less than 7 per cent. of ash. The company is controlled by Richmond, Va., capitalists, W. J. Payne, a noted electric railroad operator, being president. The intention is to develop the property as rapidly as possible in order to meet the growing demand for a good clean domestic fuel in the South and Southwest.—Coal Trade Journal.

[Richmond] Times Dispatch, Volume 1904, Number 16442, 9 January 1904, pg. 5


A One Thousand Ton Breaker Opened at the Merrimac.

(Special to The Times-Dispatch.)

CHRISTIANSBURG, VA., Jan. 8.-One of the most important events that has occurred in this section In recent years occurred to-day at Merrimac Mines, when the big thousand ton breaker of the Virginia Anthracite Coal Company was started. This breaker has been under construction for seven months, and the president, W. J. Payne, of Richmond, Va.; Vice-President L. S. Randolph, General Manager John R. Wilson, Director G. F. Ellett and the architects and contractors were present and made a thorough examination, and the architects stated that they had never seen a new breaker start off so smoothly, the breaking and sizing of the coal being accomplished with most satisfactory results.

For the past fifteen months the development of this property has beon carried on steadily on an extensive scale, and the judgment of the promoters has been confirmed by the development of a large and valuable body of anthracite coal and the successful operation to-day of the breaker.

[Roanoke] Evening News, Volume 9, Number 104, 19 August 1904, pg 3


The Virginia Anthracite Coal railroad. to be operated between Christiansburg and Blacksburg, a distance of nine miles, has already been completed to a point one mile from Christiansburg, and it is now expected by the management that the road will be finished and in operation between the two towns by September 1. It is proposed to extend the road from Blacksburg to Newcastle, Craig county. The line has already been surveyed and the grade is pronounced to be exceptionally light. This road will open up to the market the anthracite coal fields in Montgomery county, and will eventually tap an exceptionally fine virgin forest of timber in that section, besides serving as an outlet for many minerals buried in isolated spots.

[Roanoke] Evening News, Volume 9, Number 127, Friday 16 September 1904, pg. 1, 4


First Passenger Train Over New Line From Christiansburg to Blacksburg—An Important Event—Many Invited Guests on the First Trip.

Christiansburg, Va., Sept. 16.—Special.—Yesterday marked an event in the history of the town of Blacksburg which will not soon be forgotten, and also records another rapid stride in the development of the mineral wealth of this county. The Virginia Anthracite Coal and Railway Company ran its first passenger train into Blacksburg and formally opened its line for the transaction of business.

As far back as sometime in the fifties a charter was obtained for a road from Christiansburg depot to Blacksburg and from that time to this various plans have been formulated under numerous charters for the construction of a railroad, but all these amounted to nothing. In the spring of 1901 the attention of Mr. W. J. Payne of Richmond, was directed to the coal fields on the Price and Brush mountains in this county, a new charter was obtained for a railroad and it soon became manifest that the enterprise had at last fallen into the hands of one who would bring it to a successful conclusion. After the tedious delays incident to procuring rights of way on the 11th day of November, 1902, the work of construction was begun, and the road completed to the mines, a distance of five and a half miles, in April, 1903.

These mines had been operated in a crude way for a number of years, but under the new management the most approved and up-to-date methods were inaugurated. A large breaker with a capacity of 600 tons per day, has been erected and is now in successful operation. This breaker is constructed after the latest patterns and produces seven sizes of coal, equal to the Pennsylvania standard. All the machinery, appliances and equipments about the mines were selected by and put in place under the supervision of Mr. J. R. Wilson, the general manager, an educated and experienced mining engineer from the Pennsylvania fields.

The output at present is rather small owing to difficulty in procuring suitable miners. The company is now working fifty miners and will increase the number as rapidly as possible to four times as many so as to enable it to meet the demand for the coal which cannot now be supplied.

The citizens of Blacksburg were so earnest and insistent in their entreaties that the road should be completed to their town that the management finally determined to do so, and on the 11th day of June, 1904, work was commenced on the extension and the rails laid into the town the 7th of this month.

At the invitation of the general manager, a party consisting of Judge A. A. Phlegar, W. C. Flagg, J. R. Eoff, W. L. Curring, J. R. Johnson, J. H Thompson, W. M. Dunklee, W. F. Tallant, R. B. Spindle, and Dr. A. S. Ellett, prominent citizens of Christiansburg; Mr. W. H. Tomney, of The Roanoke Times, and Mrs. J. R. Wilson, and Miss Laura Jordan, boarded the first passenger coach to run over the road. At the station they were joined by W. J. Payne, vice-president; L. G. Crenshaw, auditor; Guy F. Ellett, secretary, and J. W. Walters and G. W. Walters, of the directorate.

The train, in charge of Engineman A. P. Witt, Fireman Grayson Lucas and Conductor C. R. Fagg, commenced its first journey and reached Blacksburg after a delightful run of about forty minutes. On approaching the latter place Engineman Witt awakened the echos as well as the natives by a prolonged whistle from his locomotive, and amid the waving of handkerchiefs and other manifestations of delight from a large crowd which had assembled, the train pulled up to the temporary station. After a stay of half an hour the return trip was commenced, the party being joined by Dr. and Mrs. J. M. McBryde, Professor and Mrs. L. S. Randolph, Professor and Mrs. W. D. Saunders, Professor and Mrs. Vawter, Professor and Mrs. R. J. Davidson, all of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute; Mr. and Mrs. Wirt Dunlap and many other ladies and gentlemen.

Only those who are compelled to travel the nine miles of almost impassable mountain road, during the cold, bleak, dreary winter months can fully appreciate what the opening of this now road means.

Convenient schedules will be arranged so that passengers by the Norfolk and Western train can make close connection to and from Blacksburg.

The Virginia Anthracite Coal Company owns very valuable coal lands on the Brush mountain, and it is only a question of time when the road will be extended so as to open up those fields and bring into the market a quality of coal that cannot be surpassed for domestic purposes.

The same story ran in the Times Dispatch, Number 16,640, 17 September 1904, pg. 5

[Roanoke] Evening News, Volume 9, Number 129, 19 September 1904, pg. 3


The schedule of the new Virginia Anthracite Coal & Railway Co., which went into effect on Thursday of last week is as follows:

Leaves Christiansburg, 7:15 a. m., arrives Blacksburg, 7:55 a. m.

(Express) leaves Christiansburg 10:45 a. m., arrives Blacksburg 11:15 a. m.

Leaves Christiansburg 1 p. m. arrives Blacksburg 1:40 p. m.

(Express) leaves Christiansburg 6:50 p. m., arrives Blacksburg 7:30 p.m.

Leaves Blacksburg 8:20 a. m., arrives Christiansburg, 9:10 a. m.

(Express) leaves Blacksburg 11:25 a. m., arrives Christiansburg, 11:55 a. m.

Leaves Blacksburg 4:25 p. m., arrives Christiansburg 5:05 p. m.

(Express) leaves Blacksburg 7:35 p. m., arrives Christiansburg 8:10 p. m.

The output of the mines at present is rather small owing to difficulty in procuring suitable miners. The company is now working fifty miners and will increase the number as rapidly as possible to four times as many, so as to enable it to meet the demand for coal which cannot now be supplied.