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The Philip Sporn Mine was created in 1949 as part of the power plant complex of the same name. The first four units of the power plant were completed in 1952. This helped spur the development of the Vanadium alloy smelter next door and the Kaiser Aluminum plant in Ravenswood, West Virginia. The mine created hundreds of steady, well-paying jobs that raised the standard of living for the rural, agricultural area. However, the mine was closed in 1975, and the power plant ceased operations in 2015.
Know Before You Go
The Sporn mine can be reached by driving north from New Haven, West Virginia, on Route 62 (also called Graham Station Road) to the intersection of Broad Run Road. (You will drive past the Mountaineer power plant with a huge cooling tower in the process.) Turn right onto Broad Run Road and drive a short distance past the switchyard. A chain-link fence encloses the mine property, but the gates are partly open. This site is guarded and photos may only be allowed from outside the fence.