Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine and Youth Museum

Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine and Youth Museum

Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine and Youth Museum
4.5
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
As focal points of Beckley’s lovely New River Park, the Exhibition Coal Mine, the Rahall Company Store, Mine Museum and the Youth Museum of Southern West Virginia draw thousands of people to the area annually. The unique underground mine, the recreated coal camp, the Youth Museum and the Mountain Homestead are surrounded by inviting lawns, colorful flowers, picnic areas, an imposing coal miner statue and a whimsical 20 ft. “Peace Totem. At the Exhibition Coal Mine, one can ride through the dark passages of a vintage coal mine. The guides are veteran miners and provide firsthand accounts of the daily responsibilities and tasks of past and present day miners. In addition to the Mine, one can tour the Mine Museum and the period coal camp situated throughout the grounds.
Duration: 2-3 hours
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  • KandKMaryland
    27 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    What an experience
    This was an excellent tour of a real coal mine. The tour guides were retired coal miners who really explained what it was like to mine coal in the early days of coal mining until present. Our guide Eddie really brought the experience to life. The company town exhibit and the museum were also interesting and educational. A must see if your visiting the area.
    Visited April 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written April 15, 2023
  • DutchLace
    Holland, Michigan763 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Nicely Done!
    The museum is amazing. Once you purchase your entry fee, you can tour the buildings which have guides inside some to tell you a little more about the mine camp. The mine itself was really interesting. Our guide Eddie was a retired mine worker. Fascinating! A children's museum with frontier living history was interesting to walk through and learn more about the area.
    Visited April 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written April 23, 2023
  • David B
    2 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Be sure to check it out
    Well worth the cost. I feel sorry for the people who have to work under ground like that. Make sure you bring a jacket because it is cool inside the mine. There is also a gift shop and an indoor history display.
    Visited October 2022
    Written May 11, 2023
  • lcoxSC
    38 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Well worth the time to stop
    The coal mine tour was very interesting and educational. The guide had many years experience mining coal and told us some fascinating stories, Definitely bring a jacket because it was cool and damp inside the mine. The museum had interesting displays with plenty of room to move around and see everything without being crowded. The coal camp buildings and the frontier buildings were well maintained with period furnishings and there were friendly guides on hand to answer questions. It was well worth the time to stop for a visit.
    Visited May 2023
    Written May 18, 2023
  • paula p
    13 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Need a porta John outside.
    It was a good learning experience. Gerald was really experienced in the daily grind of the mine. Only reason I didn't give a5 was because we were the last tour came out at 5:11 and store closed no bathroom. Most of the props made it look authentic.
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written June 19, 2023
  • Wisconsin_Fun_Mom
    Wisconsin103 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Enthusiastic Thumbs Up!!
    So glad we stopped here while we were in Beckley! The Exhibition was educational and so interesting. Riding the car into the actual mine was truly an eye opening look into the experience of coal miners. Our guide Dorsel was the best! He shared personal stories that ranged from funny to heartbreaking and left a lasting impression. Shout out as well to Bea who was gracious, friendly and knowledgeable on so many topics. We were late getting out of the museum because we were enjoying the conversation and stories so much. So glad we visited; unanimous and enthusiastic thumbs up!
    Visited June 2023
    Written June 25, 2023
  • Stephannie D
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Excellent
    We had a wonderful time. Everyone was very friendly and educational. I loved seeing how simply life was back then. Shout out to our guide Dorsel He was the best. Very welcoming and made us feel at ease on our journey underground. Would definitely recommend, great for kids.
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written June 28, 2023
  • Kimberly B
    2 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Take the coal mine tour!
    The coal mine tour was exceptional, thanks to our tour guide, Don. Don was able to command the attention of a cart-load of school-age kids, while entertaining and educating the entire group of 30+ people of all ages. Don is ,"The Man", and my husband and I would highly recommend this tour. The kids loved it as well. Don made this tour fun and fascinating.
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written June 28, 2023
  • FELICIA M
    3 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    This is a must do in Beckley!
    Gerald was an amazing tour guide! He was very informative, this really is eye opening if you have never been to a coal mine. I thought the grounds were impeccable, the homes and buildings from the era were so great to tour. This is well worth a stop if you are in Beckley!! I would highly recommend this. I also have a great appreciation that the individuals are paid and not volunteers! Definitely recommend!
    Visited July 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written July 10, 2023
  • Judy C
    Scottsdale, Arizona319 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A whole new appreciation for coal and coal miners!
    A nice museum preserving artifacts and information of the life of West Virginia coal miners. Wander thru period buildings and tour the little museum itself then go for an informative trip into the coal mine. Our guide Eddie gave us a great lesson on how hard these miners worked! Nice children's museum and outdoor areas, too.
    Visited July 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written July 13, 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles858 reviews
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TexasMomTW
Hot Springs, AR390 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021
We arrived a few minutes before the Visitor Center opened at 10 AM, and there were enough guests lined up that they offered us a 10 AM train ride instead of having to wait until 10:30. The train ride into the coal mine was very informative and a fun experience. Try to get seats in the center of the train so it will be easier to see the displays. Our tour guide, Gerold (?) was knowledgeable, easy to understand, interesting, organized and energetic, and gave us a good sense of the miners’ jobs, equipment, working conditions and lives. We then walked around their Coal Camp, museum, gift shop, youth museum and Mountain Homestead. All of the attractions were excellent, and the attendants in the various buildings were helpful, knowledgeable and engaging, too!
Written July 12, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Heather E
Indiana104 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2021
This was a unique West Virginia experience for us to do as a family. We were fortunate that the coal mine tour had just reopened as this really made the attraction worthwhile. It was so beneficial to get to see inside an actual mine and learn about how mining has changed over 100 years.

The coal town and pioneer village were neat, but fairly quick to go through. Our kids (ages 7 and 3) loved the Thomas attraction at the Youth Museum. After over two hours at the museums, we ate our picnic lunch here as well; there were plenty of picnic tables on the grounds.

I substracted one star for our tour guide not wearing a mask—this is a health risk especially in a enclosed environment without good ventilation. Guests were required to wear masks, but one person on our tour removed his--probably seeing that the guide couldn't care less. I would hate to see this tour have to close again, since it just started running.
Written April 19, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Anthony D
Portage, MI3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021 • Friends
The coal mine tour, and additional features including actual buildings from a coal town, make this a must see for those wanting to understand coal mining history of West Virginia.

Our guide Gerald worked 45 years in area mines, and his experience, knowledge and humor made our tour most memorable. Well worth the cost! (Bring a jacket, as the mine is 58 degrees F).
Written June 30, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sloan D
Richmond, VA1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2022
My girlfriend took me back to where she was raised, and the first place she took me (besides Pasquale's the night before) was the Exhibition Coal Mine. It was so interesting to learn more about the history about the coal mines and what life was like for the miners back then. We got to check out the museum upstairs and see a lot of amazing artifacts. Our tour guide for the mines was Tank, and I'm telling the truth when I say I've never had a more engaged tour guide. He went out of his way to tell us multiple personal stories of growing up working in the mines from such a young age, and didn't shy away from talking about the lifesaving benefits of using respirators to prevent black lung. He even took the time to chat with us after the tour. If you are visiting Beckley and want to learn about the local history, I highly recommend this museum and tour.
Written October 20, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Scott M
5 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2022
Well worth the price! The mine trip is about 45-60 minutes long, narrated by a retired coal miner. Our guide, Gerald, was entertaining and informative. He demonstrated various pieces of mining equipment.

Hint: do take a jacket with you, as the temperature inside the mine is a constant 58 degrees year-round. and set aside at least 2 hours in order to see everything!

The mining camp is staffed by very knowledgeable people who many grew up in the camps themselves.

Visiting the museum full of mining artifacts, you'll learn just what a difficult life these miners had.
Written July 19, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kay F
84 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2023 • Couples
Enjoyable and informative. A guided “man car” with a cushioned bench seat, carries passengers into a coal mine for a 30 minute tour with quick stops along the way, as you stay seated, to share the history of miners through the years and the equipment they used. Before and after your scheduled tour time, you are free to explore the upstairs museum, gift shop, and grounds with a replica coal town. It is a collection of original coal town homes, school, church, and earlier settlement cabins which have been relocated to the site. The staff were all delightful! Our guide in the mine was a retired coal miner who was very informative and even sang some coal miner songs as he drove along. Cost between $15-20 per person. Wear a warm jacket because the mine stays 58 degrees year round and there’s an occasional drip or two from the ceiling. So informative to learn about the tough lives of coal miners. Definitely worth a visit if you are in the Beckley area.
Written October 1, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Karen R
Baltimore, MD422 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021
I really enjoyed the mine tour and viewing the artifacts in the museum and suggest visiting the museum after the tour. It helped me better appreciate what the miners had to do to earn a meager living.

A hint for the mine tour - a small train pulls 2 open carriages. Try to sit as close to the middle as possible. I was on the far end of one carriage and could not see what guide was pointing out. I did remember the anecdote about how the miners put their (or their grandpa's) false teeth in the bottom section of the lunch bucket so a dishonest co-worker would think twice about drinking their water. It made me laugh when I saw those lunch buckets in the museum.
Written July 4, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Claudia W
6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021 • Friends
The mine tour with Don was one of the highlights of our week long vacation. Being from New Orleans, I really knew nothing about coal mines. Being able to ride in a coal cart and tour a very small part of a mine (1500 feet underground) with a third generation coal miner was amazing. He told stories of the mine we were in as well as what it was like growing up in a coal mine community. We later met a guide in the town who sang for us in the school house since the acoustics were so amazing. We then headed to the children’s museum with a huge, interactive train exhibit (starring Thomas and friends) as well as math and science puzzles I was able to take back to my classroom. This is an experience I have recommended multiple times since returning home. Thank you for such a fun and informational attraction.
Written August 15, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Amy B
6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2021
We were surprised by how much we learned about coal mining here. We had an excellent guide, Don, who entertained us with coal mining songs and personal stories from the mining experience. He was really great. We ended up spending much longer than we thought we would, looking into the houses and the museum. Definitely worth a visit!
Written October 16, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ahme1987
Glen Carbon, IL75 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Family
Before your tour, you can walk through the upstairs museum that has different artifacts from coal miners through the years. We road a small train into the coal mine and our tour guide Gerald told the history of the coal miner and how they were paid. All tour guides are retired coal miners. There is also a small company village with supervisor house, church, school and company house with volunteers talking on the history of the building . They also have an area with buildings from the 1800's including a log cabin, general store and blacksmith.
Written October 29, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine and Youth Museum - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

Frequently Asked Questions about Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine and Youth Museum

Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine and Youth Museum is open:
  • Sun - Sat 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM


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