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336 Mate St.
Matewan, WV 25678


The WV Mine Wars Museum preserves and interprets artifacts and historical records of the local communities affected by the Mine Wars, exploring historical events from multiple perspectives through the lives of ordinary people. The museum is dedicated to educating the public about the events of the Mine Wars era, including the history of the United Mine Workers of America in the local area; the Paint Creek-Cabin Creek Strike of 1912-1913; the 1920 Matewan Massacre; and the 1921 Miners March leading to Battle of Blair Mountain. Finally, it aims to educate youth, promote heritage tourism, and foster local economic development.


For your research

In addition to the enriching experience within the confines of the museum itself, the West Virginia Mine Wars Museum is also pleased to offer the following resources.

West Virginia Mine Wars Museum Photos

Our complete archive of photographs from the museum's planning stages, construction, exhibitions, events and programs are available for your viewing. This resource is available for educational purposes only. Please do not reprint or distribute for sale or non-classroom purposes without written permission from the WV Mine Wars Museum.

There are many wonderful sources on the web that will aid your continued exploration of this history. We recommend the following videos, oral histories, websites, and books as a place to get started.



Oral Histories

  • An 1972 oral history interview with Price Williams who was a teacher at Cabin Creek High School during the Paint Creek-Cabin Creek Coal Strike in 1912. The interview was conducted by Dr. Ken Bailey. The original interview can be found in the collection of the West Virginia State Archives.
  • Frank Brooks was born in Fayette County, WV, but grew up in Carter County, KY, in the early 1900s. He attended a one room school house through the third grade. Mr. Brooks began working in coal mines with his father in Borderland, WV, when he was 13 years old.
  • Bob Chapman was born in Louisa, KY. He grew up on Homemade Holler in the coal community of McVeigh, KY. His father worked for the Eastern Coal Corporation as an explosions miner. Mr. Chapman discusses a typical day in a coal community and the class system within this community. 
  • Helena Venturino Howell was born on September 19, 1913. Her father emigrated from Italy to Brooklyn, New York, at the age of 16. Her mother immigrated to Williamson, WV, with Mrs. Howell’s older sister in 1912. Mrs. Howell’s family lived in neighborhood in Williamson comprised primarily of Italians. During her interview, Mrs. Howell discusses her mother’s arrival to Williamson, WV, and the Italian community in Williamson.