Whitesville, West Virginia: Coal Mine Disaster MemorialA 48-foot-long spiky black granite slab, set upright along the highway into town, is engraved with 29 ghostly life-size images of the coal miners who died in 2010 explosion.
- 38233 Coal River Rd, Whitesville, WV
- Just north of downtown and south of the elementary school, on the northbound side of Hwy 3/Coal River Rd.
Visitor Tips and News About Coal Mine Disaster Memorial
The Upper Big Branch Miners Memorial opened in July of 2012. It was built to honor the memory of 29 coal miners who were killed in an explosion at the Upper Big Branch coal mine on April 5th, 2010. The monument and surrounding plaza were paid for by private donations and the monument recognizes all coal miners who have suffered illness, injury, or death while working in the coal industry. The focal point of the memorial is a 48-foot-long black granite monument. The silhouettes of 29 life size coal miners are etched into the front. Etched into the back is the story of coal in West Virginia, a coal miners tribute, and a list of those killed in the explosion.
The plaza features a bronze First Responders and Mine Rescue tribute, as well as interpretive signage that tells thet story of Upper Big Branch.[Mike Gwinn, 08/06/2012]
The worst U.S. coal mine disaster in 40 years happened in April 2010 just south of Whitesville. 29 miners died in an explosion in the Upper Big Branch Mine. Methane, coal dust, and a variety of safety violations were blamed. The memorial to the miners was unveiled in July 2012, a year ahead of schedule. A 48-foot-long spiky black granite slab, set upright along the highway into town, is engraved with 29 ghostly life-size silhouettes of the dead miners.[RoadsideAmerica.com Team, 07/31/2012]