Isaac T. Mann
A Bramwell Legend
( 1863 - 1932 )
Martha Jane Becker's book:"Bramwell - The Diary of a
Millionaire Coal Town".... Isaac T. Mann was one of
the most colorful characters who ever lived in Historic
Bramwell. Born July 23, 1863 in Fort Springs, Greenbrier
County, he began working as a teller in the Greenbrier
Bank in Alderson, WV. He helped organize the Bank of
Bramwell and subsequently became the president of the
Pocahontas Fuel Company. Once in his colorful life he was
offered the position of ambassador to Spain by President
Collidge in 1928. Mr. Mann controlled a chain of nine
prosperous banks and was president of he Pocahontas Fuel
Company for thirty-five years. He was Pocahontas Fuel
Company president for 35 years. A chain of nine banks was
another of his many financial interests. His 1923 fortune
was estimated at $18-$25 million. The next year he began
to buy Chicago real estate,businesses, apartments and
hotels. Before 1929, his property worth soared to $86
million to as much as$100 million: a fortune lost to the
Depression, along with his health.
It was said that Isaac T. Mann's business ethics were beyond reproach and he rose to become one of Bramwell's most prominent and respected citizens. His wife was Vernie Myers. They had two children, William and Alice. William died young and Alice married and moved to Denver, Colorado. The USS West Virginia Battleship, which was the length of two football fields and stood eight stories high, was launched on November 19, 1921 and was sponsored by Alice Alice Wright Mann ,daughter of West Virginia millionaire Isaac T. Mann.
Mann, Isaac T. of Bramwell, Mercer County, W.Va. Republican. Delegate to Republican National Convention from West Virginia in 1908 and 1916.
The Bramwell Presbyterian Church was organized and built by I.T. Mann in 1890. The church was constructed using local local bluestone. The first service was held in 1904 and is presently for services every Sunday.
In 1916, the Pocahontas Fuel Company opened a driftmine operation a short distance from the mouth of Barkers Creek. The president of Pocahontas, Isaac T. Mann, had 120 dwellings built to house his employees. This coal camp grew into the town of Itmann, which was named after Isaac T. Mann.
The Itmann Mine was first opened in 1918 by the Pocahontas Fuel Co. This mine was named after the president of the company, Issac T. Mann. During the 1950s and '60s it was reported to be the most productive mine in West Virginia. During the 1980s the Island Creek Coal Co. mined the Pocahontas No. 3 at Itamnn. The Itmann mine no longer operates.
A Commercial Ship bearing Isaac Mann's name hauled his coal across the Atlantic Ocean to European markets.
The Issac Mann three-story turreted Bramwell Mansion displays a handsome staircase, ornate woodwork and special details such as a secret wall safe and a studded, leather-walled den. The curved porch follows the horseshoe curve of the Bluestone River it overlooks. Across the Bluestone River via a footbridge Isaac Mann built a house-size "playhouse" for his children and their governess. The house today is a private residence. Issac Mann also owned homes in Florida, Washington, D.C. (now the Turkish embassy), and on the Massachusetts coast.
Interesting Fact: West Virginia (Battleship No. 48) was laid down on 12 April 1920 by the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry-dock Co. of Newport News, VA.; reclassified to BB-48 on 17 July 1920, launched on 17 November 1921, sponsored by Miss Alice Wright Mann , daughter of Issac T. Mann, a prominent West Virginian, and commissioned on 1 December l923 with Captain Thomas J. Senn in command.
On Sunday, 7
December 1941, West Virginia lay moored outboard of
Tennessee (BB-43) at berth F-6 with 40 feet of water
beneath her keel. Shortly before 0800, Japanese planes,
flying from a six-carrier task force, commenced their
well-planned attack on the Fleet at Pearl Harbor. West
Virginia took five 18-inch aircraft torpedoes in her port
side and two bomb hits those bombs being 15-inch
armor-piercing shells fitted with fins. The ship was sunk
but later relocated and rebuilt. The West Virginia was
sent to Puget Sound and remained there until 1944. The Mast
of Battleship U.S.S. West Virginia now rest on the West
Virginia University campus as a memorial to all those who
gave their lives on the ship when it was sunk at Pearl
Harbor on 7 December 1941. More information on this
great battleship can be found @ US West
Virginia - An On-Line Exhibit.BB
The Itmann Company Store and Office Building remains today and is located in Wyoming County, WV. The former Office is now the Itmann Homeless Shelter and the Store is vacant. It is named after Isaac T. Mann of Bramwell. Alex Manhood designed the building.
Itmann is an unincorporated former mining town located between Pineville and Mullens. The Itmann mine was opened in 1918 by the Pocahontas Fuel Company and was named after the president of the company, Issac T. Mann. The company also built 120 buildings for its employees and their families. During the 1950s and 1960s, it was the most productive mine in West Virginia.
Photo by: Stephen J. Shaluta, Jr. - Wonderful West Virginia Magazine.