Buffalo Creek in Logan County has had its share of coal mining tragedies. In February 1958
the Amherst Coal Company's mine at Lundale had a slate fall that killed six miners. Ten years
later, in December 1968, the Buffalo Mining Company had three killed in a mine fire at nearby
The most devastating disaster yet occurred on February 26, 1972.
After a rain soaked impoundment dam of the Buffalo Creek Coal Company collapsed, 138 million
gallons of black waste water cascaded down the narrow hollow. By the time the water subsided at the Guyandotte River,
125 persons were dead, another 1,000 were injured, over 500 homes were completely
demolished, and nearly 1,000 others were damaged. Property damage exceeded $50 million. Yet, these sobering figures
do not begin to describe the human suffering from such a catastrophe.
This is the story of the Buffalo Creek Flood Disaster of 1972.