With all the attention Centralia gets, it’s amazing most people are unaware of other mine fires and disasters. I admit I had never heard of Avondale until I went looking for a geocache hidden there. How does a mine disaster site with a 100+ death toll become overlooked?
There are 2 signs along the side of Route 11 in Plymouth that give a brief history of the disaster. From them it’s a very short walk to the site itself, maybe 1/3 of a mile.
As the signs say, a fire broke out in 1869. A coal breaker caught fire right by the mine shaft. Since this shaft was the only entrance, workers became trapped inside. Suffocation was the cause for many of the 110 deaths, including a few good Samaritans attempting to rescue the trapped miners. It’s no secret young children were employed in mines during this time period; a few of them were also killed.
When we visited, it looked like work had recently been done. An honorary marker had recently been placed, and what appear to have been two planters were also nearby. Walls and stairs from the mine can be found all around; we also found a few fairly intact buildings a bit down the trail.
5 thoughts on “Avondale Mine Disaster”
Good stuff. Thanks for posting.
“I Kill Here”
I love the big empty room that looks like there is ice all over the floor.
Great shots, more please!!
i grew up in plymouth twp. & never even knew about this tragic event that claimed so many lives..I went down to see it for myself & i was in utter disgust seeing all the garbage just thrown all around..i wish there was a way to stop the dumping & finish the site in honor of all the brave souls that lost their lives..thank you for posting this site the pictures are awesome..if anyone ever needs help finishing what was started Please feel free to e-mail me & i’ll be more than happy to volunteer to help preserve history..thank you again
Where is the mine shaft itself?