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Historic Mount Hope

In the years following the decline of the area’s once vast and renowned coal industry, most of the coal mines, coal camps, and other physical evidence of the era of King Coal have disappeared forever throughout the region. 

Mount Hope, West Virginia - circa 1905
Main Street Mount Hope, circa 1912

Fortunately, much of the past still exists in Mount Hope, a town that is one the last bastions of the elements of a bygone era. A trip through Mount Hope provides visitors with a rare opportunity to view many of the sights that were once commonplace throughout the coal fields of Southern West Virginia.

 Although the dozens of coal mining operations have disappeared from the hills surrounding the town, along the streets of Mount Hope visitors can still view many examples of the grand structures built by the coal barons and coal companies. The town's downtown section remains virtually the same as it did during the 1920’s, the decade when the town was one of the most important communities in the vast coal fields of the region. The offices of the region’s largest coal company, the New River Company, still exist as well as the company’s repair shops and foundry building. Just outside town, in Kilsyth, two large smokestacks loom over the former repair shop used by the McKell Coal & Coke Company, also used by the company's railroad, the Kanawha, Glen Jean & Eastern Railway.

However, none the historic sites or structures named in the paragraph above should be regarded as commercial "tourist attractions." Visitors to Mount Hope will not find a vast collection of rebuild or restored "exhibits" in pristine condition and there are no uniformed guides that will recite historical narratives. . Instead, visitors will find a "real" town, populated with "real" people, that is perfect place to "explore" with rewarding results. Stroll the town's streets and visit a few of the town's restaurants or stores and you'll likely to have the opportunity to speak with some of the town's citizens who can provide a unique first-hand account of the historic town and the various sites within it.

Additonal Resources
Look! CityofMountHope.org
The Official Web Site of the City of Mount Hope, WV
For more information on the City of Mount Hope, don't forget to visit the official Web site of the City of Mount Hope, West Virginia.  Check it out!
Look! WVePostcards.com
More than 250 images of West Virginia themes!
Most of the photos featured in Historic Mount Hope can be sent as e-Postcards from the WVePostcards.com site.  Send your friends on the Web a Mount Hope digital postcard!  Check it out!



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