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1940’s Era Wilder Map Restored At Monterey Museum

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
1940’s Era Wilder Map Restored At Monterey Museum

The Monterey Depot Museum just opened an exhibit dedicated to a recently restored map of the Wilder Area.

The community at the borders of Fentress, Overton, and Putnam Counties, was the site of a coal-mining area in the early 1900’s.

Museum Tour Guide Dale Welch said the new map was previously in such bad condition that it was of little use. The restoration revealed two new mines.

“We didn’t know five and six existed,” Welch said. “We know about one, two, three, four, but we had no clue about five and six. And we’ve had people in here from who had lived in the Wilder area. They don’t know about five and six.

In the near future, the map will be scanned through a GIS system to determine the position of the undiscovered mines through analysis of rivers and roads depicted.

The 1940’s-era map is open for viewing in the coal mines and outposts section of the museum after what Welch said was a successful restoration.

“It was in terrible condition, but we were able to get with Tommy Sandlin, who does the framing and stuff, and he restored it and it looks really good,” Welch said.

With the knowledge gained through this map, Welch says new avenues for tourism and exploration will open up, and our understanding of the operation as a whole will deepen.

“This is the end of coal mining out there,” Welch said, “Now we’re looking more toward tourism.”

The Monterey Depot Museum is open Monday through Saturday, located at 1 East Depot Ave.


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