Historical Albion Michigan
By Frank Passic

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Any photos not otherwise credited are from the personal collection of Frank Passic, Albion Historian.


Morning Star, December 30, 2018, pg. 9

Our readers might have noticed various mentions of the Albion Coal Mine north of town on 29 Mile Road (Clark St) in the 100 years ago feature in this column over the past year. 1918 was a time when there was a severe coal shortage and coal of any quality was welcome during the War years. This mine was in operation from the early 1900s until it closed in 1925. Although the main shaft as well as the air shaft was covered over after the mine closed and was partially filled, settling occurred over the years. This presented a dangerous possibility of the shafts collapsing in the future. The air shaft was only 80 feet west of 29 Mile Road along the north side of a driveway at 15409 29 Mile Road in the wooded area. The main shaft/entrance was just west of that. The main shaft traveled eastwards under 29 Mile Road to under the then-Boyd farmland where the coal was mined.

The United States Department of the Interior, Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement began investigating the former Albion Mine in November, 2011. The shafts were then approved to be a part of the Federal High Priority abandoned mine land program. It targeted the former Albion Coal Mine for "Mine Reclamation," as they termed it. After funding was obtained, a contract was awarded in September, 2017 to the Agapito Associates, Inc. from Grand Junction, Colorado to perform the work. The work involved drilling into the shafts and then pumping in a grout mixture of cement, sand, and fly ash in order to solidify (fill up) the underground shafts.

The contractor began work on January 18, 2018 and drilled nine holes in the air shaft for a total of 690 feet, and eleven holes into the main shaft to total 1,354 feet of drilling there. The infusion with the grout mixture began on February 14. The company supplying the grout mixture was from Union City. The final grout quantities totaled 112 cubic yards into the air shaft, and 288 cubic yards into the main shaft. The project was completed in March, 2018 when cleanup and restoration work was performed.

From our Historical Notebook this week we present a photograph from February 14, 2018 showing the grout mixture being poured into the pump that subsequently pumped it into the shafts. How many of our readers ever knew there was an Albion Coal Mine north of town? Special thanks to Monna Ayers who lives across the road near the former mine, for supplying information/photos for this week's article.

Pumping grout into Coal mine 10, February 24, 2018

Next: Albion 100 Years Ago - JANUARY 1919

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