A great timeline exploring the journey of coal. - Alex
EIA Energy Kids - Coal
In Colonial America, blacksmiths used small amounts of "fossil coal" or "stone coal" to supplement the charcoal normally burned in their forges. Farmers dug coal from beds exposed at the surface and sold it by the bushel. Although most of the coal for the larger cities along the eastern seaboard was imported from England and Nova Scotia, some came from Virginia.