Kempton, Maryland is a former company town along the North Branch Potomac River and West Virginia Central & Pittsburg Railway.

Construction of the West Virginia Central & Pittsburg Railway (WVC&P) reached Kempton in 1914, 2 and a deep underground mine by the Kempton Mine Company, a subsidiary of the Davis Coal & Coke Company, opened in 1915. 1 Between 1915 and 1921, the mine boasted an annual production of more than one million tons of coal with tunnels extending for 12 square miles. 2 The Compass Coal Company later purchased the mine. 1

Compass Coal announced that the mines would close on April 15, 1950. 1 The deep mine was flooded within six months, with the discharge seeping into nearby Laurel Run, causing acid mine damage that destroyed wetlands and aquatic life downstream. 2 The Kempton Manshaft Sealing Project was completed in 2003 that involved the construction of a vertical seepage barrier around the mine shaft to keep clean groundwater from infiltrating the mine. The barrier was mostly built of coal combustion products, including fly ash. 2 3



  1. Ghost Towns of the Upper Potomac. Parsons, W.Va.: Mcclain Printing Co., 1998. Rootsweb. Web. 12 June 2012. Article.
  2. Display sign.
  3. “Chapter 4 – Impacts of Power Generation and Transmission.” Maryland Power Plant Research Program, Feb. 2012. Web. 12 June 2012. Article.


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there are several homes left in this tiny little grandma and grandpa lived in this tiny town.near by down the road towards WV. line there was three homes.down below them was two homes, down the road on the way to the mine was one over the hill, one on top of the hill now gone due to a fire many, many years ago.down over the crest heading to the mine was two homes.some of the homes have year round town folks and some of their kids or grand kids living in them now.others are used for hunting season or a summer get self ,and friends from down there and family as kids we had fun playing in the woods, sliding down the coal slate piles on cardboard, playing on or near the coal mine entrance or running on top of box cars.they where abandoned for awhile before the rail road company came to get them for scrap.we played on top of the old general store walls that where left or just sit on the steps.we also went black berry picken , raspberry picken , apple picken.we all had blast.we always found something to do.we went swimming in a strip mine hole that you had to swim at your own risk. we would walk the long road up to a state marker that told people where the Potomac river begins.

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