Date of Award


Degree Name

Physical Science


College of Science

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

James Brumfield

Second Advisor

Ralph Oberly

Third Advisor

Dewey Sanderson


The Monongahela National Forest spans 10 counties in eastern central West Virginia. It has been an area of high mining and timbering activities throughout much of the early to mid twentieth century. As a result, the United States Forest Service (USFS) has focused reclamation and remediation efforts on the abandoned mine land areas. Much of the area has been subjected to mining after effects such as acid mine drainage, structural remains, gob/spoil piles, garbage piles, mine portals, and highwalls. In 1998 the USFS contracted with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to locate these mining remains and provide a detailed georeferenced inventory with a Global Positioning System (GPS) as the primary means of data collection. This included Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) coordinate locations for each feature along with such descriptors as the pH level, oxygen content, temperature, and size of each pond, as well as 3-dimensional descriptions of the additional encountered features. A geobiophysical model containing the abandoned mine land features will provide the information necessary for appropriate steps toward reclamation and restoration of the area. In order to provide a more comprehensive and detailed summary of all the located features, the completion of this research implemented current inventory practices of importing all collected data into a Geographical Information System (GIS) which was Arcview 3.2a (Environmental Systems Research Institute, Inc., 1996). These current procedures, which were not used on the Monongahela National Forest data prior to this research, require the use of scanned, georeferenced, Digital Raster Graphic (DRG) United States Geological Survey (USGS) topographic maps, at a scale of 1:24,000, as requested by the USFS. These maps, however, contain outdated information and, in addition, digital revisions cannot be made without recreating the entire paper map. The primary objective of this research creates a GIS database infrastructure for the Monongahela National Forest inventory using USGS Digital Orthophoto Quarter Quadrangles (DOQQ's) as an image base map to allow for more current geobiophysical modeling and an easily updated data management tool. The completion of the research objectives will provide insight for the collection procedures of future inventories and related products, as well demonstrate the technologies available through the implementation of a GIS.


Abandoned mined lands reclamation - West Virginia - Monongahela National Forest.

Monongahela National Forest (W. Va.)