Three individuals who made significant contributions to the state’s mining industry will be inducted Friday, May 10, into the West Virginia Coal Hall of Fame housed at West Virginia University.
The Coal Hall of Fame’s sixth classwhich includes a coal industry consultant, deceased mine operator and deceased inventor of coal industry equipmentwill be honored at a ceremony at Pipestem Resort State Park during a joint spring meeting of the West Virginia Coal Association and West Virginia Coal Mining Institute.
The Coal Hall of Fame Class of 2003 includes:
- Robert H.”Bob”Jeran , retired chief inspector, general superintendent and manager of the Bethlehem Mines Corp., Marion-Barbour Division. A Thomas native, Jeran graduated from WVU in 1949 with a bachelor of science degree in business administration. He joined Bethlehem Mines in 1953 and held a number of operating and supervisory positions. After retiring from Bethlehem in 1982, he has remained active in the coal industry by forming a consulting firm, Jeran Mining Inc. Additionally, he has belonged to numerous business and community organizations and committees at various points in his career.
- Victor N. Green (deceased), president and chairman of Eagle Coal and DockCo. Inc. of Charleston. A Racine, Boone County, native, Green entered WVU in 1938 to study engineering. He started out in the construction business, and one of his early construction companies was a subcontractor on the original construction of the West Virginia Turnpike. He founded Eagle Coal and Dock Co., which became his primary business until 1997. In addition to several coal mining ventures, one of his most successful companies was West Virginia Paving Co., a paving and construction company he sold in 1975. His surface, auger and underground mines added million of tons of coal to the state’s production during his lifetime, while his construction companies contributed to the development and improvement of mining-related infrastructure and reclamation in the southern West Virginia coal fields.
- Joseph F. Joy (deceased), founder and president of Joy Manufacturing Co. Joy grew up in the small mining town of Cumberland, Md., where he worked in every mine position available including general superintendent. Later he was hired as an engineer for Jeffery Manufacturing Co. and went on to hold positions at the Pittsburgh Coal Co. and then his own company. He developed many invaluable machines for the coal industry throughout his career, eventually accumulating 190 patents in his name.
The West Virginia Coal Association, the West Virginia Coal Mining Institute and the West Virginia Mining and Reclamation Association established the Coal Hall of Fame in 1998 to honor and celebrate the careers and accomplishments of those who have had a significant impact on West Virginia’s coal production and the industry as a whole.
Candidates must have spent at least five years in the West Virginia coal industry and served as an owner, operator, manager, engineer, educator or in some other capacity in which they contributed to the growth of coal mining in West Virginia.
The Mineral Resources Building of the WVU College of Engineering and Mineral Resources is home of the Coal Hall of Fame. Individual plaques bearing names of each of the inductees are on permanent display in the building’s atrium. In addition, a photograph of each person inducted hangs in the first-floor hallway of the facility.
The college offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in mining engineering and continuing education to coal miners through its Mining Extension Service.