Chap. 11. - An ACT in relation to Coterminous Coal Lands west of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia.
Passed January 9, 1863.
1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly, That no owner or tenant of any land containing coal west of the Blue Ridge of mountains, shall open or sink, or dig, excavate or work in any coal mine or shaft, on such land within five feet of the line dividing said land from that of another person or persons, without the consent, in writing, of every person interested in or having title to such adjoining lands in possession, reversion, or remainder, or of the guardians of any such persons as may be infants. If any person shall violate this section, he shall forfeit five hundred dollars to any person who may sue for the same.
2. The owner, tenant or occupier of any land on which a coal mine is opened and worked, or his agent, shall permit any person interested i or having title to any land coterminous with that in which such coal mine is, to have ingress and egress with surveyors and assistants to explore and survey such mine at his own expense, and not oftener than once a month, for the purpose of ascertaining whether or not the preceding section has been violated. Every owner, tenant, occupant, or agent, who shall refuse such permission, exploration, or suvey, shall forfeit twenty dollars for each refusal to the person so refused.
3. Any justice of the county in which such mine is, before whom complaint of such refusal is made, may issue a summons to such owner, tenant, occupant, or agent, to answer such complaint. On the return of the summons executed, and proof that the complaintant has right of entry, and that it has been refused without sufficient cause, the justice shall designate an early and convenient time for such entry to be made, and issue his warrant commanding the sheriff of the county to attend and prevent obstructions and impediments to such entry, exploration and survey. The cost of such summons, and a fee of three dollars to the sheriff executing the warrant, shall be paid by the person whose refusal caused the complaint. But if the justice dismiss the complaint, the costs shall be paid by the party making it.
4. This act shall be in force from its passage.
Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood: January 1863