The distillery site took a lot of prep work, much more than I had thought. The building site looks really big at this point and we were not sure what exactly we had gotten ourselves into. Would have made a great baseball field..
Work is now in 2 locations!
Now that we think we uncovered all of the spring, (yeah not) the problem of how to get this water usable and keep the critters out of it.. fenced in the mines till we could get a handle on it.
So the building is starting to look like a building, Concrete done, structure almost done. Need some siding and Insulation, and a Roof.. Voilla!. Now we start to see what a monster this building is.
Mine #2 plumbing
Here we see Mine #2, getting ready to re-enforce the mouth of the mine to prevent collapse, and starting on the plumbing system for the water. One pipe for waste, one for water. (use one or the other, not both at same time)
Jumbo Penut butter?
A few things were found inside the mine, pictured here is a Jumbo Peanut butter jar. Also found whiskey bottles from Duraglass in Fairmont WV made in the 1930’s, a 7 dwarfs axe (which fell apart on touching it) and several other mining artifacts like hoses and such.
The mines were hand dug in the 1930’s or so, based on the bottles we found in the mine. Mine #1 is approximately 300 Ft deep into the mountain, and Mine #2 is approximately 500 Ft deep. Only one person has been to the end of both mines, and no one has explored the entirety of the mines, as there are many branches and hazards. Hopefully future will hold more info.
So we were almost a year into working on this project to develop the water supply for the distillery and we had several issues.
- How to capture the water with no electricity
- How and where to store the water
- How to protect the water from contamination
- How to prevent the mines now exposed to the weather, from freezing and collapsing
- How to prevent animals from getting into the mines and the water
- How to get the water to the distillery building site, 1500ft away in the valley.
- How to get this all done before winter, and how to pay for it all..
Here is what the distillery looks like in May 2017, not a whole lot.. Barn is gone, getting ready to call in TKS in Buchannon WV. They are the ones that got us back on track. Highly recommended by the way!
Distillery Site prep
So it begins, the long process of working on the distillery, all the while still working on the water system up the hill. Even TKS with all their expertise had no idea how we would pull this all off.. Took a lot of negotiation and patience on the part of Tom Shaw, but we pulled it off in the long run as you will see.