ODNR is seeking old, abandoned underground mine maps in an effort to expand the existing database of abandoned underground coal mines in eastern and southeastern Ohio.
Only 50% of Ohio’s 7,000 abandoned underground mines have been recorded in the state’s database, as of July 2005.
Former coal miners and descendents may have maps as keepsakes or memorabilia.
County courthouses, engineering and consulting firms, local historical societies, museums and libraries may also possess maps.
Once scanned, use of computer technology can pinpoint mine locations in relation to current surface activities to help avoid hazards. The information:
- Helps property owners, developers and transportation officials avoid building on potential sink holes
- Helps with investigations of subsidence and other hazards caused by abandoned underground mines.
Anyone having old Ohio underground coal mine maps they would be willing to loan should contact the Abandoned Mine Land Program within the ODNR Division of Mineral Resources Management at 614-265-6633.
Underground Mine Mapping Timeline*
1874 – First accurate underground mine maps are required by the State of Ohio.
1968 – Ohio Division of Geological Survey (ODGS) generated reproducible maps of the Abandoned-Underground-Mine (AUM) Map Series; used Ohio Dept. of Industrial Relations, Division of Mines (DOM) abandoned-mine file, other maps and available data.
1973 – U.S. Bureau of Mines (USBM) microfilmed final or abandonment maps for all mines on file at the Ohio DOM.
1980 – ODGS photographically reproduced the final or abandonment underground mine maps at a unified scale; used maps on file at the Ohio DOM.
1995-1996 – ODNR Division of Real Estate and Land Management digitized mine polygons, mine entry points, and mine point locations; used the ODGS 7.5- minute quadrangle-based Abandoned-Underground-Mine-Map-Series mylars.
2002-2003 – ODGS inventoried existing collected maps (more than 25,000); verified against the abandoned underground mine (AUM) maps, added mines and mine extensions not on the AUM maps.
2002 – ODGS began efforts to prepare a comprehensive AUM GIS.
2002 – Ohio Dept. of Transportation (ODOT) contracted the ODGS to include scanned images of detailed mine maps in the GIS and geo-reference TIFF images of mines underlying or adjacent to federal/state highways.
2004 – An Internet-accessible version of the AUM GIS and underground mine locator was created to allow anyone to enter a street address to locate any mines near a property in question; partners included ODGS, ODNR Division of Mineral Resources Management (DMRM), and the Ohio Mine Subsidence Insurance Program.
2004 – U.S. Dept. of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) awarded ODGS a grant to geo-reference abandoned mine maps not included in the ODOT GIS. (As of 2004, more than 2,600 mine maps had been geo-referenced out of 4,786 collected.)
2005 to present – DMRM solicited libraries, museums and historical societies, coal operators and former miners, and the general public for additional Ohio underground mine maps to add to the state’s growing database of information.
*Source Reference: Crowell, D.L., DeLong, R.M., Banks, C.E., McDonald, James, Wells, J.G., Powers, D.M., Wickstrom, L.H. 2006, Underground Mines of Ohio: Ohio Division of Geological Survey Map EG-3, scale 1:500,000.