McRoberts, KY

The coal camps of Fleming, McRoberts and the trading center of 

Neon, KY are located in a remote hollow-lying between tall peaks

of the sloped Cumberland Mountains.

The coal camp of McRoberts was founded by Consolidated Coal 

Company in l9l2. It is located northeast of Fleming on Wright's 

Fork of Boone, a tributary of the Kentucky River.  It was built 

to house workers who came to build the railroad and stayed to 

work in the mines. The camp planners decided that the center of 

this camp should be at the widest part of the valley, the mouth 

of Chopping Branch. 

McRoberts was named for Samuel McRoberts who was a New York City

banker and later became a company director.  For many years 

McRoberts was a part of Jenkins along with Dunham and Burdine.

One early settler of this area was Joel M. Wright and his family,

who according to family tradition and court records had his home 

at the mouth of what is now Choppin Branch.

Near the mouth of Tom Biggs stood the home of John Wright.  John 

owned several homes on Elkhorn.  Letcher County deed books show 

that in l9l3 Consol purchased land from Elizabeth Brown, George 

Wright, Elijah Wright and Samuel Webb, among others.

The rail-laying train reached McRoberts on the North Fork 

Entension on November l6, l9l2.  In l9l8 a doctor's office was 

built and a doctor and nurse were hired for the town.  At the 

head of Choppin Branch a "pest house" was built for the people 

with contagious diseases.

Even though Consol is gone from the area, the strong community 

spirit remains.  Every two years a reunion is held and the town 

is overrun with those returning from distant areas.

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