building fronts along RR tracks
Commercial Row at Thurmond

Louise McLaughlin


Hiking or driving through New River Gorge today will provide glimpses of old stone walls, foundations of homes and buildings, coal mine entrances, and coke ovens decaying alongside the railroad tracks. These places provide tangible reminders of the days when the coal coming out of New River Gorge fueled the industrialization of our nation.

  • train depot


    A historic RR town, Thurmond recaptures the days when steel rails, steam, and coal were the major themes in our nation's history.

  • coal conveyor and tipple


    The remains of a tipple, coal conveyor, coke ovens, and buildings tell the story of one of the gorge's most significant coal mining towns.

  • historic photo of bridge crossing a river and leading to a town

    Glade Creek/Hamlet

    The piers of the abandoned Glade Creek Bridge today mark the site of a former lumber mill and the remains of company logging towns.

  • historic photo of soldiers constructing a bridge

    Army Camp

    Camp Prince, or Army Camp, served as a training and testing ground for assembling floating bridges during the Korean War.

  • historic photo of bridge across river with a town on the other side


    Now nearly totally reclaimed by the forest, the town of Royal was once the site of the first coal mining company in Raleigh County

  • historic photo of nurses in front of a hospital

    McKendree Hospital

    Also know as Miner's Hospital Number 2, McKendree Hospital opened its doors in 1901 to provide medical care for injured miners.

  • historic photo of brick school building

    Sandstone School

    Now the site of the Sandstone Visitor Center, Sandstone School educated local students from 1925 through 1994.

  • church on a hillside


    The first coal shipped out of New River Gorge in 1873 came from the town of Quinnimont, named for the five mountains that surround it.

  • white farmhouse

    Trump-Lilly Farm

    The collection of buildings preserved at Trump-Lilly Farm take visitors back to the early days of Appalachian subsistence farming.

  • old chestnut log barn

    Richmond Hamilton Farm

    This early subsistence farm offers a glimpse of what life was like for early settlers in this region.

  • historic photo of people in a store

    Prince Brothers Store

    Early newspaper’s claimed that the Prince Brothers General Store was “the most important store in the county.”

  • railroad tunnel


    The small town of Prince still has an operating railroad depot and is the jumping off place for the drive to Glade Creek.

  • railroad depot

    Prince Depot

    The Prince Depot, constructed in 1946, is still active today, serving passengers on the Amtrak Cardinal.

  • girls boarding train for summer camp

    Camp Brookside History

    Learn about the history and view historic photos of Camp Brookside.

Last updated: August 28, 2020

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Glen Jean, WV 25846



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