COAL
Around Lake Washington

The Seattle Coal & Transportation Company is one of the early local business enterprises that succeeded in putting Seattle and the eastside on the map. In the fall of 1863, surveyor Edwin Richardson discovered coal beside a stream later named Coal Creek.



Prospectors discovered the rich coal seam south of the Creek at a place called Newcastle, named after the famous English mining town. To bring the coal form Newcastle to Seattle, the company constructed a cumbersome system of tramways and barges to haul trains of iron-wheeled wooden cars.

Each cart was capable of carrying two tons of coal from the mines to bunkers on the Seattle waterfront. In January 1875, the sternwheeler Chehalis was rounding the northwest point of Mercer Island when a gale blowing from the south tipped the barge it was towing and sent 18 cars plunging into the lake. They remain where they sank, well preserved in 200 feet of water, many of them upright and still carrying their cargoes of coal.



A hiking trailhead to this mine shaft is located right off Coal Creek Parkway between
405 and Newcastle. Its a small dirt parking lot which fits about 6-7 cars.
A sign may mark it is as closed




Part of the Newcastle coal mines transportation system, the railroad's construction lasted
from the summer of 1871 until March 25, 1872.
On the day of completion, free rides were given all day.





This is rehabilitated Coal mine car completed in August 2008 and  was shipped to Renton.  Northwest Railroad Museum


On March 25, 1872, workers complete a narrow gauge railroad in Seattle that runs from south Lake Union to the foot of Pike Street. The railroad becomes the
 First in Western Washington.




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