An Old Furnace, Mercer County, Pennsylvania


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An Old Furnace - was found on Little Neshannock Creek in East Lackawannock Township by Ian Straffin in 2005. We have an account of a furnace in East Lackawannock Township that was built in 1838 and operated until 1856 as the last iron works in the township(rzw). We will attribute these dates to the Old Furnace. The date of blow out is in conflict with the 1865 attributed to the Iron City Furnace so it is not clear which was the last one blown out (rp). I had been searching for the Iron City furnace for some time when information in an article by(rzw), and an 1860 map of East Lackawannock Township(elw), both obtained from Chris, Office Manager of the Mercer County Historical Society, led me to the approximate coordinates for a furnace shown as "Old Furnace" which we will use as the name until data proves otherwise. I contacted Ian Straffin(is) who then located the site and confirmed the GPS location. The 15 foot high remains are collapsed but several rows of stone and at least one opening are still visible. The interior brick lining shows at the top of the pile indicating a quite large bosh of possibly 10'. (P)(V)(is-rp-2005).
Two routes are offered.
(1). Go west from Mercer on PA62 about 1.4 miles to the junction with Bestwick Road to the left. 41 13.558'N - 80 15.935'W. Follow Bestwick Road west and southwest for about another 2.4 miles to the junction with PA318 coming in from the left 41 12.801'N - 80 18.736'W. Continue west on PA318 about another mile to Flat Road. 41 12.705'N - 80 19.013'W Turn right (north) on Flat Road, proceed about 1/8 mile and park at 41 12.781'. Climb over the small bank on the west side of Flat Road and the furnace will be about 40 feet below you.
(2) Go west from Mercer on PA318 about 4.9 miles to Flat Road and procede as above
GPS Coordinates 41 12.781'N - 80 19.026'W. (is,rp-2005).

Old Furnace

Old Furnace Furnace Opening

Closer View of Opening

Iron City Furnace Special Sources:
A Guide to the Old Stone Blast Furnaces of Western Pennsylvania, Myron B. Sharp and William H. Thomas (s&t)
East Lackawannock Twp. by Ruth Z. Woods(rzw) on Behalf of Mercer Co. Historical. Soc. Iron City
www.rootsweb.com/~pamercer/PA/PL/Maps/1873/elackawann.jpg --(elw)(courtesy Chris, Mercer County Historical Society). Iron City
Christy Hunter Hall, Mercer County Historical Society, Mercer, PA
Ian Straffin, Maedville, Pa., Clay, Old Furnace (is)
Copyright Richard Parks, updated January 30, 2010, December 16, 2011