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In March of 1942, the Skookum Slope coal mine, which  had been closed since 1883 was re-opened.  The main slope was sunk in 1942 when it was re-opened by the Wilkeson Coal & Coke Co. The U.S. Defense Plant Corp. had signed an agreement with the Wilkeson Products Company to develop a mine near Wilkeson to produce coal for the industries in the Pacific Northwest.  The Wilkeson Coal and Coke Company re-opened the mine in March of 1942 to provide coal for the war effort. Named for "Skookum" Smith, who made history by bringing the Northern Pacific rails into Tacoma just one day before the line's charter expired, the mine produced thousands of tons of coal from March 1942 until 1956 when it was once again closed.

It is no easy task getting close to the mine site, especially during the rainy season.

Skookum Mine 1944    

Entrance Skookum Slope mine 1943- (Miner Robert Peloli - Pictured)          Entrance to Skookum Slope Mine 2010   

Remains of Skookum Mine washery and loading out bins  

A stone retaining wall and bridge remnants along creek.  
Skookum Slope Mine March 19, 1942   

Another inundated tunnel next to the main entrance that was a tunnel to the No. 2 Coal Seam. 

Much of this area is underwater - more mine workings underwater. 

Remains of the Fan House mostly underwater adjacent to mine entrance. 

Ruins identified from Robert Peloli and Skookum Mine Map Nov 1943       

Looking into the inundated (filled with water) mine from the entrance.        

Skookum Slope Mine Washery and loading out bins
Courtesy of Robert Peloli 
Skookum Slope Mine 1942 -1956

Site visit 2010

Flooded Fan house. 
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Pierce County Mines 


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