Hickory Furnace, Butler County, Pennsylvania


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Hickory - is along Slippery Rock Creek in Slippery Rock Township.It was built in 1836 by Joseph P. Swearingen. After a few years it was sold by the sheriff to William Stewart and C. C. Sullivan who rebuilt it in 1846. A large pile of the stones remain but most has been carted off for other construction (s&t) (P)(V)(rp-1978, rp,dd-2004). Drive north from Butler on PA8 to the bridge over Slippery Rock Creek. Just past the north end of the bridge turn right on Keister House Road. Follow this road about 3/8 mile to a railroad right of way. Park here and walk west along the railroad right of way and cross a bridge over Slippery Rock Creek. About 100 feet west of the end of the bridge turn north into the woods for about 100 feet to the bottom of a small hill. Hear is the mound remaining from the furnace, the millrace and the tailrace. Slag is abundant, and a few stones. GPS coordinates 41 02.912'N - 80 00.007'W. (rp,kn,dd-2004)
Higher up near the tracks are more stones which could have been part of the retaining wall for the charging bench. GPS coordinates 41 02.887'N - 79 59.978"W.(rp,dd-2004)

Loose stone remain at Hickory site - 1978

Retaining wall remains - Hickory 1978

Furnace Special Sources:
A Guide to the Old Stone Blast Furnaces of Western Pennsylvania, Myron B. Sharp and William H. Thomas (s&t)
Dan and Chris Dundon, Erie Pennsylvania (dd)
Copyright Richard Parks, December 19, 2009