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The West Virginia. Cyclopedia


Concho, West Virginia

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1913 USGS map showing Concho and the Thurmond Coal Company operation at Erskine, at bottom of the New River Gorge
View of New River Gorge from the Concho Overlook
View from the Concho Overlook, circa 1960s

A mine opening and head house of the Erskine mining operation were located at Concho on the flank of the gorge above Arbuckle Creek. Coal loaded through the head house was conveyed to a tipple located along New River at Erskine. A post office was established here at an unknown date, but was included on a 1917 list of West Virginia post offices. The population of Concho in 1910 was 200 according to the W.Va. Geological Survey of 1919.

Employees of the mining operation at Erskine lived in Concho in company-built houses, most of which were built for occupancy by two families. The mining company also built a school at Concho for the miners' children. A company store was located at Concho but because the supplies were shipped in via the railroad they had to be transported from Erskine, at the bottom of the gorge. During it early years of operation the company maintained a small warehouse at the mouth of Rock Lick on Arbuckle. From there, supplies were transported to the Concho area via a tram used previously to transport lumber for construction of houses at Concho. After a road was built along Arbuckle Creek to Concho, the company built a warehouse at Erskine near the mouth of Arbuckle Creek. Supplies were received by the store at Erskine via the railroad and later transferred to the store at Concho by a wagon pulled by a four-mules team up the road along Arbuckle.

Rafter's Reference: Concho was located high above the river on the flank of the gorge and is not easily accessible. The Concho Overlook is located at the ACE Whitewater Rafting Resort and is a favorite recreation spot for their guests.