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Pattenburg Photos

 
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BorisChechev
Mine Timberman


Joined: 27 Oct 2008
Posts: 43

PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 6:50 pm    Post subject: Pattenburg Photos Reply with quote

Took a walk around Pattenburg looking for a mine which was said to be inside the old abandoned quarry area. Never did find the mine, but I took some interesting photos...


Something was mounted here...



Railroad tunnel (still in use)...






Old quarry equipment...









Darn bears...









...Beavers too!






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Jackstraw63
Ironmaster


Joined: 26 Apr 2008
Posts: 1223
Location: Berkeley Heights, NJ

PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2008 7:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Never heard about a mine here. The tunnel is quite popular with Railfans though. A number of years ago there was a lot of buzz about a Norfolk Southern Engineer who used to give the finger to those filming the freight action there.

Nearby Hoffman Park is great to walk around in any season.

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The Privy Man
Mine Foreman


Joined: 14 Oct 2007
Posts: 978
Location: Morris Canal Lock No. 10 East

PostPosted: Tue Dec 30, 2008 12:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like all the abandoned machinery and equipment scattered around. I would have a field day shooting pictures up there!
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BorisChechev
Mine Timberman


Joined: 27 Oct 2008
Posts: 43

PostPosted: Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had my kid with me so I tried to set a good example and not climb around the old equipment.

From what I've read, there's a mine above the abandoned train tunnel, which is different from the tunnel in the pictures. Has anyone been to the abandon train tunnel?
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shelly
Loose Scaler


Joined: 28 Dec 2008
Posts: 12
Location: Marion NY

PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

BorisChechev wrote:
I had my kid with me so I tried to set a good example and not climb around the old equipment.



Great old stuff there. Climbing would have been big fun. What a temptation to say "Do as I say and not as I do" Smile
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FerromonteFan
Mine Timberman


Joined: 12 Oct 2007
Posts: 42

PostPosted: Mon Jan 26, 2009 4:28 am    Post subject: General History and Period Map Reply with quote

Here's an 1888 New Jersey Geological Survey map of the mines in the area around the Pattenburg Tunnel that I hope will help you locate these sites.

Iron mining was a major industry in the Musconetcong Mountains throughout the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries. According to the New Jersey Geological Survey reports, forty-one mines were once worked in Hunterdon County. Based on the information that I've unearthed thus far, the railroads began serving the mines in the county in the late 1800's. In 1868, the West End Iron Company started mining operations on a vein of magnetite extending to the southwest from what was then the hamlet of Bethlehem. The West End Mines (also known as the "Broderick Mine", "Harris Mine", and the "Turkey Hill Mines") yielded over 12,000 tons of high-quality ore annually. This operation flourished with the completion of the Lehigh Valley Railroad (LVRR) in 1875. Period maps show a spur leading from the LVRR main line along the series of shafts composing the West End Mines, extending for nearly a mile along the north slope of Musconetcong Mountain. In 1880, the village of Bethlehem (located near the mouth of the LVRR's Musconetcong Tunnel, the predecessor of the 1927 Pattenburg Tunnel) changed its name to "West End" to mirror that of the mining firm. Built between 1872 and 1875, the Musconetcong Tunnel was 4,893 feet long and at the time was the longest railroad tunnel in the eastern United States. It is situated just east of the younger bore.

Another mine to benefit from rail transportation was the Swayze Mine (previously known as the "Bethlehem Mine"), which lay to the east of West End (the mine was renamed after William Swayze, a local landowner and state Assemblyman). Opened in 1868 by the West End Iron Company, the mine produced 16,000 tons of ore annually during its peak years. In 1881, an iron-cable aerial tramway was constructed to transport the mine's produce down the north face of the mountain, where it was transferred to wagons, which hauled the material to the Valley Station of the Central Railroad of New Jersey. Here, the raw material was loaded into ore cars bound for the furnaces.

By the mid-1880's, the Messabi Range had pulled the focus of the iron industry away from New Jersey. In 1886, the West End Mines closed, followed by the Swayze Mine in 1889, and the town of West End reciprocated by rechristening itself "West Portal" in reference to its proximity to the LVRR's tunnel entrance. In 1939, the Swayze Mines were re-opened by Harry M. Roche, president of West Portal Mines, Inc. This time, the ore was hauled to the furnaces by trucks. Due to the manpower shortage caused by World War II, the Swayze Mine was abandoned permanently in 1943. The mine produced about 250,000 tons of ore during this period.

The right-of-way of the LVRR spur to the West End Mines was plowed under by the local farmers over a century ago and no traces are visible today. Only one small "pond" (i.e. what appears to be a flooded shaft) can be discerned on the aerials, but the West End Mines are all on private property, so I would highly advise against any reconnaissance missions in this case.

The remains of the Twentieth-Century Swayze Mine operations are currently separated by a parking lot built by the Hunterdon County Parks and Recreation Department for the Jugtown Mountain Nature Preserve off Mine Road and one can easily explore them.

Besides the iron mines depicted on the map, one can see a quarry on the west side of Wolverton Road, just south of its intersection with Asbury-Bloomsbury Road; additionally, there was a clay pit on the south side of Tunnel Road. Examining modern aerial images, these sites are not readily visible.
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MinerDan
ABM Underground Crew
ABM Underground Crew


Joined: 12 Oct 2007
Posts: 3435
Location: Sussex, NJ

PostPosted: Mon Jan 26, 2009 6:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I visited the Swayze and West End mines years ago with Miner Bob. They were both relatively disappointing hikes, despite the mines having a very large output. I would say that both sites had undergone heavy reclamation at some point in the past.

The West End Mine site is heavily posted as you described, which severly limited our reconnaissance.
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Jackstraw63
Ironmaster


Joined: 26 Apr 2008
Posts: 1223
Location: Berkeley Heights, NJ

PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A number of items about this interesting topic. First of all, here is alink to a NY Times article concerning why Quarrying was halted at this site:

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=950DE2D71639F937A15751C1A96F948260&sec=&spon=&pagewanted=1

Quarrying was halted at this site due to a tremendous landslide that occurred at the North Wall of the Quarry following what turned out to be the last blast. The Quarry owner said at the time that the blast may have taken out an old Mine shaft. Regardless, the blast tapped into some source of water because the wall started draining a tremendous amount of water. It also cracked a roadway above the Quarry which briefly had to be closed to permit NJ Mine Inspectors to evaluate.

I was at the site today and was amazed at the amount of ice and gurgling water at this North wall. In the landslide area, which has huge boulders the size of glacial erratics, there are areas where cold air is flowing out. If you look into some of the open spaces between the boulders there are huge icecles. Could just be a large air pocket but I sure found it impressive. There were also some good mineral finds adjacent to the collapse zone.

Last but not least, here is link to a discussion on the old Pattenburg tunnels. Trespassing along the Norfolk Southern right of way is a risky proposition.

http://www.railroad.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=127&t=57899&start=0&st=0&sk=t&sd=a

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lessthanchris1
ABM Underground Crew
ABM Underground Crew


Joined: 12 Oct 2007
Posts: 1584
Location: Hazlet, NJ

PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 11:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My brother works for NS.... I wonder if he can do anything....
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capn crunch
Loose Scaler


Joined: 10 Jan 2011
Posts: 25
Location: Central NJ

PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2011 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry to revive an old thread but I thought I'd provide an update on this site. I checked it out two days ago and every single structure (save for a couple old sheds) is rubble now. the dozer tracks were still very fresh.
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MinerDan
ABM Underground Crew
ABM Underground Crew


Joined: 12 Oct 2007
Posts: 3435
Location: Sussex, NJ

PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2011 9:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

thanks for the update capn, another one bites the dust. Sad
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Jackstraw63
Ironmaster


Joined: 26 Apr 2008
Posts: 1223
Location: Berkeley Heights, NJ

PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2011 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Captain. That's sad as I had wanted to go back in there. I recently read an article that noted that the property owners are going to try to remediate the collapsed area in the back. That collapse which buckled a nighborhood road above got the quarry shut down in 1990.

Some interesting minerals in the back. Wonder if they are going to try to put a development in there or the buildings were razed for safety concerns.

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