June 08–DANVILLE — Hundreds of people taking part in the March to Save Blair Mountain gathered at Danville in Boone County on Tuesday afternoon to eat lunch and gear up for the next leg of their journey to historical Blair Mountain.
The marchers had just been refused lodging at a camp site in Boone County after the owner learned they were protesting mountaintop removal coal mining. One marcher said the owner said her husband is a coal miner and would be fired from his job if they allowed the marchers to stay there.
Not long after they finished their lunches, the marchers — already nearly 400 strong — were taken back to Marmet, where their 50-mile trek began, to stay the night and to avoid a severe storm brewing in the area. They planned to continue their march this morning at 7 a.m., going through Madison in Boone County and on toward Blair Mountain. The march in support of saving Blair Mountain from surface mining is scheduled to end at Blair Mountain in Logan County on Friday and marchers will hold a rally on Saturday that will include country music singers Kathy Mattea and Emmy Lou Harris. Mattea, a West Virginia native, has been an outspoken opponent of strip mining.