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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Murphysboro in Jackson County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

First Coal Mine in Illinois

 
 
First Coal Mine in Illinois Marker image. Click for full size.
By Jason Voigt, November 26, 2020
1. First Coal Mine in Illinois Marker
Inscription.  The first coal mine in Illinois was located one-half mile south of here along the south bank of the Big Muddy River. William Boone and his indentured servant, a man named Peter, loaded a small raft with coal from an outcropping and, after floating down the Big Muddy and the Mississippi, they unloaded the coal in New Orleans on November 10, 1810. The coal was used for blacksmithing. In the next two years they repeated the venture six more times and others soon joined in the operation, including Joseph Duncan, a future governor of Illinois.

While there had been earlier sightings of coal along the Illinois River, historians credit Boone's Mine as the beginning of the industry in Illinois. Until 1823 Jackson County was the only county in Illinois to produce coal and all the mines were in the immediate area of Boone's first mine. The mines were drift mines where coal was removed by tunneling into the banks along the river. During the first five years about one hundred tons were being mined annually.

Following the Civil War the mines along the Big Muddy were consolidated into the Grand Tower Manufacturing, Mining, and Transportation
First Coal Mine in Illinois Marker image. Click for full size.
By Jason Voigt, November 26, 2020
2. First Coal Mine in Illinois Marker
Marker is located on the grounds of Jackson County courthouse.
Company. Coal was transported by rail, which came to be called the "Granny Line," to Grand Tower for the iron blast furnaces there and to supply fuel for the Mississippi River steam boats, the Big Muddy mine was the genesis of the mammoth coal industry in Illinois which brought prosperity and thousands of job to the state.
 
Erected 2013 by The Illinois Coal Association, Jackson County and the Illinois State Historical Society.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & CommerceRailroads & StreetcarsWaterways & Vessels. In addition, it is included in the Illinois State Historical Society series list.
 
Location. 37° 45.826′ N, 89° 20.076′ W. Marker is in Murphysboro, Illinois, in Jackson County. Marker is at the intersection of South 10th Street and Chestnut Street, on the left when traveling north on South 10th Street. Marker is located at the southeast corner of Jackson County courthouse lawn. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1001 Walnut Street, Murphysboro IL 62966, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Company H 27th Illinois Infantry (within shouting distance of this marker); Jackson County, Illinois (within shouting distance of this marker); Conrad Will of Brownsville (within
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shouting distance of this marker); Logan Day 1914 (within shouting distance of this marker); Dr. John Logan (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Israel Blanchard (about 300 feet away); Elizabeth Jenkins Logan (approx. ¼ mile away); Major General John A. Logan (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Murphysboro.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 27, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 27, 2020, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois. This page has been viewed 39 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on November 27, 2020, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois.
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Mar. 3, 2021