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McKinley County Ghost Towns - Page 3

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Allison, New Mexico


Allison, New Mexico, 1916

Allison, New Mexico in 1916


Allison, New Mexico, located on a coal belt just northwest of Gallup, once flourished as a coal mining camp. Today there are just a few old company houses and mobile homes to indicate that this was ever a town at all.

The mine was first opened by a man named Gus Mulholland and later worked by Andrew Casna. However, when Casna was killed at the mine, presumably by Indians, his aggrieved widow fled to Germany. Her failure to keep up the development work necessary to retain her husband's claim resulted in a filing on the mine site by F. J. Allison and W. A. Patching in 1897. It was then that the town took its name for F.J. Allison. A post office was opened in 1913 and the pair continued to work the mine until 1917, when the Diamond Coal Company bought them out.

Allison was a company-owned town like most of the others in McKinley County. Employees lived in the small frame homes provided by the Diamond Coal Company. In addition to providing a livelihood for Allison residents, the company also furnished recreation for its employees in the form of tennis courts and a company-sponsored baseball team. The town reported a population of five hundred, a company store, a meat market, post office, school, doctor and a sheriff.

Today the town has just a few residents.

Clarkville, New Mexico

Though the town is long gone, during its hey day it was an important lignite coal mining camp operated by the Clark Coal Company. The camp, founded in 1898, was named for its owner, W.A. Clark, a well-known mining magnate and millionaire.

Clarkville was reportedly a pretty little place with comfortably-built houses. Among the town's features were a two story brick commissary, a school building, a library and a hospital. At the time, the town c laimed that it possessed so many favorable characteristics that the miner and everyone living there was happy and contented. Unique for these mining camps was the fact that Clarkville never had a saloon and also prohibited the sale of liquor on its premises.


The mine was equipped with an electrical plant and a ten-ton electric locomotive that propelled the coal cars. Telephone connections ran between the mine and the town. In 1905, Clarkville had 400 residents, but two years later it had decreased to 200. The post office closed in 1908 and Clarkville became a ghost town.


Clarkville was located about six miles northwest of Gallup.



Kathy Weiser/Legends of America, updated May, 2010.


Also See:

Gallup, New Mexico - Indian Center of the Southwest

Ghost Towns of the American West

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Route 66 (Mainpage)




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