Washington Furnace, Clarion County, Pennsylvania


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Washington - Is on a branch off Piney Creek near the junction of Limestone, Monroe and Clarion townships west of Mechanicsville and about1/2 mile north of Monroe Furnace. Was built in 1846 by D. Long & H. Blackstone. This steam powered cold blast furnace stood 30' high with an 8.5' bosh, and one tuyere. Production in 1846 and 1847 was 1000 tons and it produced 706 tons in the spring of 1885(hcc) (1855-s&t), before it was blown out(hcc). The iron was shipped to Pittsburgh in flat boats from the lower bridge in Clarion(ajd). The furnace was in good condition until 1930 when the WPA took stones for a bridge abutment(s&t). However much remains, and a well preserved lime kiln is nearby. (P)(V)(rp,km-2004)
Follow SR1007 south from Clarion to Mechanicsville, about 4 miles. Turn west (right) on Brook Road (SR2014) Go about 2.25 miles or to a gated road on the left at 41 09.611'N - 79 22.303'W. Park here. Walk around the gate, cross the creek, and into the woods on the right to the furnace. The furnace is in poor condition but stands about 15 feet high with parts of all four sides still standing, much slag abounds and a millrace and wheel pit are present.
GPS coordinates 41 09.565'N - 79 22.287'W (rp.km-2004)
According to residents of the area, if you returned east on Brook Road about 0.8 miles to a pole building on the right, and crossed the creek near this point you would come upon a lime kiln (maybe 2), which could have been mistaken for the Furnace in the s&t's account. I believe this was the location we visited in 1978 and identified as a lime kiln near Washington furnace.

Washington Furnaace looking Southwest - October 2004

Karl Mouck at Washington Furnace lookiong South - October 2004

Washington Furnace looking Southeast - Octoer 2004

Washington Furnace Special Sources:
A Guide to the Old Stone Blast Furnaces of Western Pennsylvania, Myron B. Sharp and William H. Thomas (s&t)
Caldwell's Illustrated Historical Combination Atlas of Clarion Co. Pa. J. A. Caldwell(jac) 1877*
History of Clarion County, unknown compiler, cir 1976 (hcc)*
History of Clarion County A. J. Davis (ajd) ed. 1887*
Unspecified Clarion Co. Sources from asterisk list above.(unk)
Karl Mouck, Sandy Lake, PA

Copyright Richard Parks, January 20, 2010