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Coal Mining Heritage Association of Montgomery County

Although there are many other coal mining sites in Montgomery County, the Coal Mining Heritage Park at Merrimac is the most visible reminder of this industrial past. The park is both an outdoor science laboratory and nature center for area schools and an outdoor historic and archaeological museum. Whether your interest is the cultural past, the natural past, or a present influenced by both cultural and natural forces, the Coal Mining Heritage Park offers something to pique your curiosity.

Merrimac played a key role in the mining history of the New River Valley. It was one of the largest semi-anthracite coal mines in the Valley Coal Field of Virginia. Merrimac has roots going back to the Civil War, when it was the site of a confederate mining colliery (a coal mining operation with housing for the miners). Supposedly, the site became known as Merrimac because the mine supplied coal to fuel the Ironclad Merrimac in its battle with the U.S.S. Monitor during the Civil War. The real heyday of Merrimac was in the early twentieth century, until the mine closed in 1935 (the management shut the mine rather than compromise with labor demands).

During its heyday, the site of Merrimac was alive with activity. The industrial complex included the mine and numerous buildings used to carry out mining operations. Though little of this past is in evidence today, people are working to make this past alive to park visitors and Huckleberry Trail users.

The Coal Mining Heritage Association meets the first Monday of each month at alternate sites. Please use the contact information at right for more information.


Coal Mining Heritage Park is located at the intersections of Merrimac and Hightop Roads in Montgomery County and stretches .6mile along the Huckleberry Trail.


PO Box 511
McCoy, Virginia 24111-0511

Rev. Jimmie Price, President

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