Beaver Coal Company, Limited owns approximately 50,000 acres of surface and mineral property centrally located in Raleigh County, West Virginia, and within a 10 mile radius of Beckley. Much of the property is serviced by all public utilities and is primed for commercial, industrial and residential development. Beaver Coal Company, Limited prefers to enter long-term ground leases of its surface property but has on numerous occasions sold property for development.

   With an average elevation of 2,200 feet, Beaver Coal's land holdings are situated on a natural plateau that exhibit enhancing views of timberland, rivers, gorges and meadows. Raleigh County is considered a gateway to a variety of outstanding recreational activities that draw people to the area and prompt their interest to return and stay to be part of its future development. Among Raleigh County's attractions are world-famous whitewater rafting excursions, amazing snow skiing resorts, splendid golfing opportunities, adventurous ATV riding, and challenging hiking and biking expeditions.

   Beaver Coal Company's landholdings are not only blessed with natural beauty and prime location, it is readily accessible by a variety of transportation methods. The transportation system around Beaver Coal Company's property consists of the N & W Railroad, the CSX Railroad (both railroads run through the property), the Raleigh County Memorial Airport (adjacent to the eastern boundary of Beaver Coal Company property) and numerous four and six lane federal and state highways.

  • Interstate 77 runs in a southeasterly direction through the center of the property

  • Interstate 64 runs in an east to west direction through the center of the property

  • The Coal Fields Expressway originates on Beaver Coal Company property near the Town of Sophia, West Virginia, and runs in a southwesterly direction through the property

  • The Planned Beckley By-Pass forms the third leg of the triangle with Interstate 64 and Interstate 77 and will traverse Beaver Coal Company property in a northwesterly direction

  • U.S Route 19 runs southeasterly through Beaver Coal Company's property and intersects Interstate 77 just three miles north of Beaver Coal Company's property




Beaver Coal Company owns approximately 41,000 acres of coal property. All of the property is located in the low-volatile metallurgical coal fields of Raleigh County, West Virginia. Although most of the mining rights are leased to large, nationally recognized coal producers, some opportunity remains to obtain lease rights on various portions of the property.

Throughout the years Beaver Coal Company has worked closely with the Department of Environmental Protection's Abandoned Mine Lands Program. This cooperative effort resulted in the reclamation of numerous coal refuse areas left from pre-1969 mining operations. Some of the reclaimed areas included mine refuse with as much as a 30 percent coal content. The opportunity to recover the coal from these "coal rich" mine refuse sites remains open to interested parties.


In 1993, Beaver Coal Company, Limited began a sustained yield timber harvest program to assist the company in maintaining a healthy forest cover and to maximize yield of forest products. This program ensures that the volume of timber harvested from the property each year remains less than or equal to the volume that is grown on the property.

Each year three to four million board feet of timber is harvested from the property. Approximately one-half of the harvest is performed by timber companies that bid for specific harvest units. The remaining half of the annual harvest is performed by an operator working under a longer-term timber purchase contract from Beaver Coal Company.

Oil & Gas

Since the late 1920s, natural gas has been produced from Beaver Coal Company's property. The first natural gas lease was made with Godfrey Cabot in 1929. Since then at least eight other natural gas producers have operated on Beaver Coal Company's property, including United Fuel Gas Co., Appalachian Exploration & Development, Peake Oil & Gas, North Coast Energy, Columbia Natural Resources, American Gas Utilities, Co., EOG Resources, Milton Oil & Gas, and CDX, Inc. There are presently six natural gas production companies that have gas rights leased from Beaver Coal Company.

Until 2001, gas production from the property was limited to production from gas wells drilled vertically into conventional sandstone and limestone natural gas reservoirs. In 2001, EOG Resources produced pipeline quality methane gas from a horizontally drilled well in the Pocahontas No. 3 Coal Seam on Beaver Coal Company's property. More recently, CDX, Inc. began a horizontal coal bed methane well drilling program on Beaver Coal Company's property. This program has the potential to double the gas production from the property during the years 2008 through 2014.



   In 1889, Anthony Drexel, Logan Bullitt and J.P. Morgan, three prominent men from Philadelphia, PA, sent their land agent, Azel Ford, to Raleigh County, WV, to purchase approximately 50,000 acres of property in and around the Beckley area. The acquired property was later placed under the banner of Beaver Coal Corporation, the predecessor to Beaver Coal Company, Limited, and a local superintendent was employed to manage the affairs of the company. The typical superintendent, or general manager, was employed by Beaver for more than 20 years and eventually retired from the company. In its 100 plus year history, Beaver has had only seven superintendents or general managers.

   During the first 100 years, Beaver's primary source of income was generated through the leasing of its coal reserves to coal mining companies and the sale of its timber. Beaver has never mined or sold a single pound of coal, nor has it cut any timber from its property. Timbering and mining activities on Beaver's property has always been carried out through agreements with separate companies.

   As time passed, Beaver began to lease portions of its surface property. Starting with farming or individual purposes, the company eventually expanded its leasing for commercial purposes. Income from surface leasing was not considered vital to the financial status of Beaver for the first 100 years and little effort was made to maximize it.

   Today, Beaver is a limited partnership with its general partner being Beaver Management Corporation. Beaver Management Corporation consists of six directors who meet monthly to review the company's status, offer advice and approve or disapprove recommendations made by the general manager. Three of the current directors are descendants of the three original founders of the company. The directors' expertise and experience cover a broad range of businesses: One is a former banker, one is an attorney, one is an investment banker, one is a professional engineer and former general manager of Beaver, and one is a CEO and major stockholder of a national motel chain.

   Beginning with the employment of the sixth general manager in Beaver's company history in 1992, the long-term income generation strategy of Beaver was revised and supplemented. While coal, natural gas and timber would continue to play a major role in the income generated from Beaver's property, a decision was made to invest time and money in the development of Beaver's surface property as it related to commercial development and increased residential development. Since then, Beaver's conservative Board of Directors has carefully, but positively, increased the income from the surface development of its property. A lack of infrastructure on Beaver's property was initially considered a major obstacle to property development, but Beaver has overcome this obstacle and accelerated the development of its surface property into an income generator. In addition, Beaver has also managed to maximize income generated from timber, coal and natural gas resulting in a nearly six-fold increase in Beaver's annual income. By 2005, there were approximately 700 families and 90 businesses leasing property from Beaver.

   Beaver realizes that coal and natural gas are depleting resources. Beaver has taken steps to maximize the income from these resources and has projected that income from these resources will continue to increase over the next four to five years. Following the increase, income from coal and natural gas will remain level for five to 10 years and then begin a slow decline. Beaver conducts a sustained yield timber management program on its property, which provides a constant regeneration of its timberlands and thereby creates a long-term, stable and sustainable income source.

   Recently, Beaver purchased or developed ownership interests in separate companies that create income generation through residential development, mini-storage rentals, tourist property rentals and other commercial ventures.

Beaver has been a shining example of good corporate citizenship. In 2004, the Beckley/Raleigh County Chamber of Commerce selected Beaver as the recipient of its annual community service award. 



As part of the Raleigh County/Beckley area since 1889, Beaver Coal Company, Limited and its predecessors have been able to serve and benefit the community through a variety of charitable donations, creation of employment opportunities, and contribution to community projects. With approximately 50,000 acres of land in Raleigh County, Beaver Coal has always operated under the philosophy of having on-site management; further extending its belief in contributing to the community is part of good business practice.

Some of our contributions are as follows:


  • Land has been donated to 27 Raleigh County public schools.

  • Land has been donated for high school athletic facilities.

  • Financial contributions have been made for graduation projects.

  • Beaver employees a minimum of two college students every summer to enhance the development of their business education and provide financial assistance.

  • Scholarships have been provided to Mountain State University.

  • Beaver granted land use ability for the nature/forestry learning trail for Beckley Stratton Junior High School.

  • Thirty-three prime acres of real estate along Interstate 64 where donated by Beaver to Forward Southern West Virginia for a Consolidated Higher Education Center which was used as the primary gateway to access federal funding for the center.


  • Approximately 90 businesses are located on Beaver property.

  • In 1993, a sustained yield timber harvest program was initiated to insure that no more timber is harvested than is grown in any single year, requiring at least 20 full-time employees needed on an annual basis.

  • Beaver continually works with small business owners and entrepreneurs to create new business and industry for Raleigh County.

  • Over 200 jobs are the direct result of business and industry operating on property affordably leased from Beaver.

Other Community Projects

  • Fifty prime acres on Gray Flats were donated to the Raleigh County YMCA by Beaver Coal Company, Limited for the most advanced soccer facility in the eastern part of the U.S. Beaver Coal Company's management actively participated in the fund raising process that eventually resulted in the construction of the $4 million sports complex which has now become a regional venue for such activities as soccer tournaments, concerts, car shows and other assorted events.

  • During the 1990s, 25 prime acres on Gray Flats were donated to Pinecrest Business and Technology Park for the development of future jobs for Raleigh County citizens. This project was completed by working closely with the Four C Economic Development Authority, the Raleigh County Commission, the West Virginia Economic Development Authority, the Joseph Smith Family and local businessmen. The Pinecrest Business and Technology Park was initially started as a Public/Private Partnership.  Beaver Coal Company and the Joseph Smith Family contributed property to fulfill their role as the private partners in the development.

  • Beaver Coal Company was one of the founding members of The Jobs Foundation of Beckley. This organization was started in 2001 with the mission of championing the development of high paying jobs in Southern West Virginia and in particular the Beckley Area. Beaver Coal Company has been on the Board of Directors of The Jobs Foundation since its inception and has annually contributed financially to the organization.

  • The Community of Slab Fork is one of the last remaining intact “coal camps” in West Virginia. The community found itself in danger of losing its water system in 1998. Beaver Coal Company funded the renovation of the water system and helped ensure the viability of the coal camp.

  • Beaver Coal Company partnered with Raleigh County Public Service Department to help extend public water service from Tams Mountain to the community of Hotchkiss.

  • Beaver Coal Company provides property to numerous church groups and other civic groups at nominal annual rentals.

  • Beaver Coal Company has worked closely with CDX, Inc. and EOG Resources to develop horizontal coal bed methane drilling as a commercially viable process for the thin coal seams in Raleigh County. This project removes much of the dangerous and explosive methane gas from coal seams prior to mining and provides numerous high-paying jobs. The natural gas production also results in increased severance tax revenue for Raleigh County and the State of West Virginia.

Support & Involvement

  • All employees of Beaver Coal Company actively participate in at least one community service organization. Beaver Coal Company employees actively participate in the following organizations: The Beckley/Raleigh County Chamber of Commerce Committees of Transportation and Infrastructure, the Executive Committee, the Membership Committee, the Government Affairs Committee, the Retirement Community Committee, the Beckley Half Marathon Committee, The Jobs Foundation of Beckley, the Piney Creek Watershed Association, and The First Tee Foundation of Beckley.

  • Beaver makes annual contributions to the United Fund, Salvation Army, The Women's Resource Center, The March of Dimes, The American Cancer Society and many other charitable organizations.

  • Beaver has provided property for the Women's Club of Beckley, The Women's Resource Center, the YMCA Regional Sports Center, the Warren Thornhill III City Park, and other groups and organizations.

  • Beaver provided property for the excess material created in the dredging of Soak Creek.

  • Property was given to the City of Beckley for the construction of New River Drive, to the State of West Virginia to widen the road to Pinecrest Technological Park and numerous other roads in Raleigh County free of charge.

  • New, attractive and peaceful communities and business locations have been developed on Beaver's property in conjunction with several business and residential developers.

Beaver has always been managed locally and has always been responsive to community needs. Beaver Coal Company will continue working diligently to help make Raleigh County a better place to live and work.


"The Beckley-Raleigh County Chamber of Commerce relies on its members' participation and dedication to accomplish worthy goals. Beaver Coal Company is a working partner with the Chamber and is helping to build a better community through its participation in government and legislative issues, economic development programs, retiree recruitment, highway planning and the education system"