Mining in the Neoga Quadrangle
The first mining noted in the area may be the surface mine mentioned by Worthen in 1875 in 24-T10N- R6E (near or at mine index 4848). The mines, surface mines or shafts, all appear to have been small with low production, so that the owners and years of operation are uncertain, and all appear to have been worked before 1930. Mining did not cease after 1930, but the number of ISGS field personnel who noted mining activity dwindled. Mining may have taken place more recently without being included in the Coal Report. The last mine whose location is not known (Mines Whose Locations Are Not Known, Neoga Quadrangle, at the back of this report) ceased production in 1935.
Mining may have taken place in Cumberland County in 1895. The 1897 Coal Report does not specifically list the mine(s) or production, but Cumberland County is included in a statewide tally of the counties from 1895 to 1897, where 15 mines were reported operating in the grouping of mines in Cumberland, Effingham, Jasper, Morgan, Pike, and Richland Counties. No production or number of mines were tallied for 1896 or 1897, which may only mean that information was lacking, not that mining had ceased in those counties. Counties with a few small mines were not systematically reported. For instance, a state mine inspector in 1899 noted that two small mines were in operation in another county, and that mining had been taking place for the last six years. However, those mines were never mentioned again and no production was reported in later years. Such information indicates that mining may well have taken place in eastern Illinois with little evidence in the Coal Reports.