Guide to the Bluefield, West Virginia Papers, 1896-1915

Summary Information

Title: Bluefield, West Virginia Papers, 1896-1915
Collection: AC.533
Extent: 0.01 linear feet (1 folder)

This collection consists of two items from Bluefield, West Virginia. First is a company receipt from W.H. Coffman Coke Company to H.B. Staley of Marion, Virginia dated March 2, 1896. Second is a scenic postcard of Bluefield dated May 20, 1915.

Creator: unknown

Biographical/Historical Note


There is bustle and business at the head of North Fork. The center of activity is the little town of Burke Garden ( Burks Burks)--not to be confused with Tazewell's Burks Garden), about a mile and a half from Ashland Coal, where the Zenith Coal and Coke Company, of this city (Bluefield) is preparing to open up a colliery. This company is grading a track from Ashland to the Zenith lease, about a mile and a quarter. The work is being done by the company itself, and they have provided a good outfit for that purpose consisting of steam drills, scrapers, etc. A noticeable feature is the fine stock of mules and horses. In addition to grading the track, the Zenith Company is building a large number of houses. In fact, they may have broken the record in the house- building line. Trees were felled in the morning, dragged to the Company's new mill, put into lumber,and built into a house, and by night a colored family from Bluefield were living in it. It is expected that the grading will be completed by the `10th of July and that the work of laying the track will begin at once. As soon as the track is down, the Company expects to be ready to ship coal. The colliery will be equipped in-first class shape from the start. The work is in charge of the company's superintendent, Jas. F. Bohannon, who thoroughly understands the business. The officers of the Zenith Company are W. H. Coffman, President and general manager; Mrs.Coffman, Vice-president; S. B. Coffman, Secetary and Treasurer; and the above with H. A. Ritz constitute the Board of Directors.

(This article found on internet about W.H. Coffman and his new company, Zenith. Don't know if it was part of W.H. Coffman Coke Company.)

(site:; Submitted by June White)

Scope and Contents

The 1896 W.H. Coffman receipt has a lot of information on it - Average analysis of coke, the fact that their "foundry & furnace coke was awarded the 1st premium at the Worlds's Fair in 1893, and a lithograph picture of the N&W Railway and coal mine.

The postcard is a drawing or painting of downtown Bluefield Avenue, mailed from Bluefield on May 20, 1915 to Mr. B.B. Feaganes from E.H.B.


The collection is arranged chronologically.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for use in the Dougherty Reading Room. An appointment for research is recommended. The Dougherty Reading Room is located on the 4th floor of Belk Library in Special Collections.

Acquisitions Information

Donor and origin of this collection are unknown. Accession number is AC.2001.041.

Processing Information

Processed by Anita Elliott, March 2013. This collection was processed as part of a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission. The grant funded extensive processing of the backlog within the W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection between 2012 and 2014.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], AC.533: Bluefield, West Virginia Papers, W.L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Appalachian State University, Boone, North Carolina, USA.

Container List

Papers, 1896-1915 ACSC_Box 15.30