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Illinois
Coal & Coal Mining
History & Genealogy

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Hancock County, Illinois
Featuring Coal Mining
      Hancock County is a county located in the central part of the state of Illinois.
            40.40° N, 91.17° W
Hancock County was formed, on January 13, 1825, out of Pike County, and named for John Hancock, signer of the Declaration of Independence.
 
      The population was 20,121 in 2000 and 19,104 in 2010.
 
      The county seat of Hancock County, Illinois is Carthage
 
      There are 25 townships in Hancock County, Illinois :
Appanoose, Augusta, Bear Creek, Carthage, Chili, Dallas City, Durham, Fountain Green, Hancock, Harmony,
La Harpe, Montebello, Nauvoo, Pilot Grove, Pontoosuc, Prairie, Rock Creek, Rocky Run, St. Albans, St. Mary's,
Sonora, Walker, Warsaw, Wilcox, and Wythe
 
      Some of the Cities, Towns, & Villages are :
Augusta, Basco, Bentley, Bowen, Carthage, Dallas City, Elvaston, Ferris, Fountain Green,
Hamilton, La Harpe, Nauvoo, Plymouth, Pontoosuc, Warsaw, West Point
and unincorporated villages of Adrian, Burnside, Colmar, Colusa, Denver, La Crosse, McCall,
Niota, Stillwell, Sutter, Webster,
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1885 Annual Coal Report 2
Hancock County
      Six mines were in operation last winter in this county. They are all located from two to three mikes south of Augusta.
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Fatalities Sources

Hancock County, Illinois - Historical
1857 news article
Courtesy of Douglas Maag
  Warsaw Bulletin
Struck Coal
Nov. 16, 1857 : In sinking a well on the farm of Gen H. Stephens, one mile east of this city, the workmen struck a vein of pure cannal coal at a depth of 28 feet, and also a vein of water that rushed in so profusely that the workmen were compelled to abandon the search further. Enough specimens were procured to satisfy the best judges of coal that this is a very superior article. The General is making arrangements to test the vein, and if it proves as extensive as anticipated, it will be a lasting benefit to Warsaw and a fortune to the General.
Henry Stephens 3 -- Was a New Yorker, and is said to have read law in the office of Millard Fillmore. He settled in Warsaw about 1840, and arose to the rank of Brigadier-General in the Militia. Gen. S. was not an able lawyer, neither was he an orator, yet by his industry, energy and methodical habits, he attained to considerable practice.
Early Photograph of a coal mine in Hancock County, Illinois at an unknown location. Unknown Mine photo
Courtesy of Douglas Maag

Augusta Coal Mine
The legal description lists this as :    Hancock County - Township 3 North, Range 5 West
An underground mine at a depth listed in 1885 2 as 50 feet and in 1887 4 as 70 feet .
Mine Name Operated By Years
Unknown Name Coal Mine   Crain & Williamson 2   prior to 1885
Augusta Coal Mine   Augusta Coal Company   1885 - 1896
[Source - No. 1, Index # 2395]
 
1885 Annual Coal Report 2
Hancock County
      The firm known as Crain & Williamson, has now become the Augusta Coal Company.
      The shaft operated by Crain & Williamson has been abandoned, the condition of the roof being such hat mining the coal was nearly impossible. A trial shaft was sunk north of the abandoned one. The coal and roof were found satisfactory. The railroad track has been extended to that point, and a new shaft is being sunk. The coal will be raised by steam power, and mining on a comparatively large scale will be carried on.

Davis Coal Mine
Mine Name Operated By Years
Davis Coal Mine   Davis Coal Company   1914 - 1916

1914 Annual Coal Report 17 --- New Mines -- Hancock County. -- Davis Coal Company, Augusta.
1916 Annual Coal Report 19 --- Abandoned Mines -- Davis Coal Co., Augusta

Ebben Coal Mine
The legal description lists this as :    Hancock County - Township 3 North, Range 5 West, Section 26
Underground Mine.
Mine Name Operated By Years
E & Y Coal Mine   Ebben & Young   ? 1914 - 1931 ?
Jones Coal Mine   S. H. Jones   1914 - 1915
J & E Coal Mine   Jones & Ebben   1915 - 1918
Ebben Coal Mine   Clarence Ebben & Son   1929 - 1931
[Source - No. 1, Index # 2399]
 
1914 Annual Coal Report 17 --- New Mines -- Hancock County. -- S. H. Jones
1915 Annual Coal Report 18 --- Change of Name -- J. H. Jones to Jones & Ebbens

C. H. Ellis & Son's Coal Mine
The legal description lists this as :    Hancock County - Township 3 North, Range 5 West, Section 34
Slope Mine.
Mine Name Operated By Years
Unknown Name Coal Mine   C. H. Ellis & Son   1902 - ?
M & E Coal Mine
[Source - No. 1, Index # 6312]
 
1902 Annual Coal Report 14
C. H. Ellis, Augusta, Hancock county, has opened a new mine for local trade. It is a slope to seam No. 2, and is covered with 35 feet of surface.

Jones Coal Mine
An underground mine at a depth listed in 18852 as 35 feet deep; in 18874 as 50 feet deep; in 18936 as 30 feet deep
Mine Name Operated By Years
Jones Coal Mine   Samuel H. Jones   prior to 1896

M & E Coal Mine
The legal description lists this as :    Hancock County - Township 3 North, Range 5 West, Section 25
Drift Mine.
Mine Name Operated By Years
E & B Coal Mine   Ebben & Bennet   1939 - 1942
M & E Coal Mine   Martin & Ebbens   1942- 1943
[Source - No. 1, Index # 2396]

McQuaid Coal Mine
The legal description lists this as :    Hancock County - Township 3 North, Range 5 West, Section 26
Underground Mine.
Mine Name Operated By Years
Unknown Name Coal Mine   Augusta Coal Company
J. A. McQuaid
  1921 - 1927
[Source - No. 1, Index # 2398]

Meredith Bros. Coal Mine
Mine Name Operated By Years
Unknown Name Coal Mine   Lyman Bennet   1914 - 1915
Meredith Bros Coal Mine No. 2   Meredith Bros.   1916 - ?

1915 Annual Coal Report 18 --- New Mines -- Lyman Bennet, Augusta
1916 Annual Coal Report 19 --- Change of Name -- Lyman Bennet to Meredith Bros., No. 2

R R Shaft Mine
The legal description lists this as :    Hancock County - Township 3 North, Range 5 West, Section 34
An underground mine at a depth listed in 1890 5 as 70 feet deep.
Mine Name Operated By Years
Unknown Name Coal Mine   Meredith Bros.   prior to 1896
R R Shaft   Meredith Bros.   1896 - 1939
[Source - No. 1, Index # 261]
 
1896 Annual Coal Report 7
Meredith Bros., Augusta, have replaced their abandoned mine with a new one designed the same as the old, and 400 to 500 yards southeast of their old one and the same distance from the railroad. They intend to deliver the product of the mine to the railroad flats by a tram road and horse.
 
1898 Annual Coal Report 9
Mine Fire
November 30, 1897, the Meredith Bros.' mine at Augusta, Hancock county, was destroyed by fire. It was a gin-shaft, worked with horse power. The gin and all other buildings around the mine were destroyed. It took about two weeks to rebuild them and get in running order.
 
1902 Annual Coal Report 14
Fire destroyed all the buildings, engine, drum, etc., of Meredith Bros, mine, located at Augusta, Hancock county, March 12, 1902. Estimated damage, $2,000; no insurance.

Stockton Coal Mine
The legal description lists this as :    Hancock County - Township 3 North, Range 5 West, Section 25
Underground Mine.
Mine Name Operated By Years
Stockton Coal Mine   Alfred Barnes   1920 - 1922
Stockton Coal Mine   A. E. Roberts Company   1924- 1926
Stockton Coal Mine   Alfred Barnes   1926- 1927
[Source - No. 1, Index # 2397]

3 Counties Coal Mine
The legal description lists this as :    Hancock County - Township 3 North, Range 5 West, Section 22
Strip Mine.
Mine Name Operated By Years
3 Counties Coal Mine (Tipple)   Three Counties Coal Company   1940 - 1942
[Source - No. 1, Index # 609]

Triple S Coal Mine
The legal description lists this as :
Adams County - Township 2 North, Range 5 West, Section 12
Hancock County - Township 3 North, Range 5 West, Section 27
Strip Mine.
Mine Name Operated By Years
Three Counties Coal Mine (Tipple)   Three Counties Coal Company   1941 - 1947
3 Counties Coal Mine   Three Counties Coal Company   1941 - 1946
Triple S Coal Mine   David E. Rowland   1946 - 1949
Triple S Coal Mine No. 2   Triple S Coal Company
Tipple in Adams County
  1949 - 1969
[Source - No. 1, Index # 836]

Early Coal Mine Operators
Listed in the Annual Coal Reports
all with a Post Office address of Augusta, unless otherwise noted.
Barnes & Bennett in 192423
Barnes & Bobb in 193833
Barnet Young & Bobb in 193029
L. Bennet - Underground Mine at 30 feet deep.
Bett & Kruse, Brighton in 192928
J. S. Boyd - Underground Mine at 35 feet deep
A. J. Bruner - Underground Mine at 30 feet deep
John Christian - Drift Mine at 20 feet deep in 1885 & Underground Mine at 20 feet deep in 1887.
Wm. Courtney - Underground Mine at 30 feet deep.
Patrick "Paddy" Doyle - Drift Mine at 21 feet deep in 1894.
J. B. Dunant - Underground Mine at 35 feet deep.
Charles Eager, at Golden, - Underground Mine at 18 feet deep.
Ebben & Young in 192726
A. H. Ebben in 191820
Troy C. Ellis in 194136
Highland & Marks - Underground Mine at 30 feet deep.
Eddie Hiland in 1934 (spelled Highland in 193631) (Edgar Hiland in 193732)
John Highland - Slope Mine at 30 feet deep.
      J. Hiland - Underground Mine at 25 feet deep.
      John Hiland in 191820 (spelled Higland in 191921)
Wm. Holden in 192322
William Holder - Drift Mine at 25 feet deep.
Charles Howard in 192322
O. P. Leach - Underground Mine at 40 feet and at 24 feet deep in 1893.
Low Ash Coal Mine in 193430
Jacob Marks - Drift Mine in 1890 -- Slope mine at 55 feet deep in 1893.
Andra Martin in 193430
Everett Meredith in 192726
F. E. Meredith & Son in 192322
Greivett Meredith in 192524
Harry Meredith in 192625
P. P. Newcomb - Underground Mine at 50 feet deep.
Newcomb & Compton - Underground Mine at 50 feet deep.
M. F. Ray - Drift Mine at 40 feet deep.
Red Ash Coal Co. in 194035
Roberts & Co. in 192423
Square Deal Coal Co. in 191820
Thompson & Steward in 192423
Vanell & Sons in 192322
Wm. Underwood - Underground Mine at 30 feet deep.
Webster & Ring in 190615
Western Coal Co. in 192524
Patrick Whalen - Underground Mine at 36 feet deep.
George Wiley in 190113
Ray Woolridge in 192322
Robert Young in 193934
W. C. Young in 190716

Hancock County, Illinois
Coal Mine
Fatalities
THORNTON
January 3, 18957, Jacob B. Thornton, of Augusta, miner, aged 43 years, married, was injured in Samuel Jones' local mine, at Augusta, Hancock county, at about 9:30 a. m., and died in about nine hours after the accident. He had gone to work in the morning and after commencing work, a large rock fell on him. He neglected to timber his room properly for such a bad top, having allowed the props to get too far back from the coal face. He left a widow and five children.
 

Sources :
 
1 Coal Mines in Illinois, Hancock County
                Illinois State Geological Survey, 615 East Peabody Drive, Champaign, IL. 61820

2 Statistics of Coal in Illinois, 1885
                A Supplemental Report of the State Bureau of Labor Statistics
                Springfield, ILL.; H. W. Rokker, State Printer and Binder, 1885

3 History of Hancock County, Illinois; by T. H. Greg; Chicago; Chas. Chapman & Co.; 1880
4 Statistics of Coal in Illinois, 1887
                A Supplemental Report of the State Bureau of Labor Statistics
                Springfield, ILL.; H. W. Rokker, State Printer and Binder, 1887

5 Sixth Biennial Report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics of Illinois, 1890
                Springfield, ILL.; H. W. Rokker, State Printer and Binder, 1891

6 Statistics of Coal in Illinois, 1893
                Springfield, ILL.; H. W. Rokker, State Printer and Binder, 1894

7 Statistics of Coal In Illinois 1895
                Fourteenth Annual Report;    Springfield, ILL.; Ed. F. Hartman, State Printer, 1896

8 State Bureau of Labor Statistics, Coal In Illinois, 1896
                Springfield, ILL.; Phillips Bros., State Printers, 1897

9 State Bureau of Labor Statistics, Coal In Illinois, 1897
                Springfield, ILL.; Phillips Bros., State Printers, 1898

10 State Bureau of Labor Statistics, Coal In Illinois, 1898
                Springfield, ILL.; Phillips Bros., State Printers, 1899

11 Eighteenth Annual Coal Report, Illinois Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1899
                Springfield, ILL.; Phillips Bros., State Printers, 1900

12 Nineteenth Annual Coal Report, Illinois Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1900
                Springfield, ILL.; Phillips Bros., State Printers, 1901

13 Twentieth Annual Coal Report, Illinois Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1901
                Springfield, ILL.; Phillips Bros., State Printers, 1902

14 Twenty-First Annual Coal Report, Illinois Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1902
                Springfield, ILL.; Phillips Bros., State Printers, 1903

15 Twenty-Fifth Annual Coal Report, Illinois Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1906
                Springfield, ILL.; Phillips Bros., State Printers, 1907

16 Twenty-Sixth Annual Coal Report, Illinois Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1907
                Springfield, ILL.; Phillips Bros., State Printers, 1908

17 Thirty-Third Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1914
                State Mining Board       Springfield, ILL.; Illinois State Journal Co., State Printers, 1914

18 Thirty-Fourth Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1915
                State Mining Board       Springfield, ILL.; Illinois State Journal Co., State Printers, 1915

19 Thirty-Fifth Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1916
                State Mining Board       Springfield, ILL.; Illinois State Journal Co., State Printers, 1916

20 Thirty-Seventh Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1918
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Illinois State Journal Co., Springfield, Illinois, 1918

21 Thirty-Eighth Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1919
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Illinois State Journal Co., Springfield, Illinois, 1919

22 Forty-Second Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1923
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Illinois Printing Co., Danville, ILL., 1923

23 Forty-Third Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1924
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Illinois Printing Co., Danville, ILL., 1924

24 Forty-Fifth Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1925
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Illinois State Journal Co., Springfield, Illinois, 1926

25 Forty-Sixth Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1926
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Illinois Printing Co., Danville, ILL., 1927

26 Forty-Sixth Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1927
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Illinois Printing Co., Danville, ILL., 1928

27 Forty-Seventh Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1928
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Illinois Printing Co., Danville, ILL., 1929

28 Forty-Eighth Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1929
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Journal Printing Co., Springfield, ILL., 1930

29 Forty-Ninth Annual Coal Report of Illinois, 1930
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Illinois Printing Co., Danville, ILL., 1931

30Fifty -Third Coal Report of Illinois, 1934
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Printed by authority of the State of Illinois

31 Fifty -Fourth Coal Report of Illinois, 1935
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Printed by authority of the State of Illinois

32 Fifty -Fifth Coal Report of Illinois, 1936
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Printed by authority of the State of Illinois

33 Fifty -Sixth Coal Report of Illinois, 1937
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Printed by authority of the State of Illinois

34 Fifty -Seventh Coal Report of Illinois, 1938 -- Department of Mines and Minerals
35 Fifty -Eighth Coal Report of Illinois, 1939 -- Department of Mines and Minerals
36 Fifty -Ninth Coal Report of Illinois, 1940
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Printed by authority of the State of Illinois

37 Sixtieth Coal Report of Illinois, 1941
                Department of Mines and Minerals       Printed by authority of the State of Illinois

 

Coal & Coal Mining in Illinois
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