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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Clarion in Clarion County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Helen Furnace

 
 
Helen Furnace Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, August 31, 2012
1. Helen Furnace Marker
Inscription. Just west of this point can be seen the well-preserved interior of cold blast furnace built in 1845. It was one of numerous iron furnaces operated in Clarion County from about 1829-1867. The County, then, was often referred to as "The Iron County."
 
Erected 1949 by Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.
 
Location. 41° 17.25′ N, 79° 19.112′ W. Marker is near Clarion, Pennsylvania, in Clarion County. Marker is at the intersection of Miola Road (Pennsylvania Route 1005) and White Oak Drive (Pennsylvania Route 1004), on the right when traveling west on Miola Road. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Clarion PA 16214, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 3 other markers are within 16 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Clarion County (approx. 6.1 miles away); Olean Road (approx. 9.5 miles away); Refugee Towns (approx. 15.3 miles away).
 
Also see . . .  Helen Furnace, Clarion County, Pennsylvania Highland Furnace. (Submitted on June 20, 2014, by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.)
 
Categories. Industry & Commerce
 
Helen Furnace Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, August 31, 2012
2. Helen Furnace Marker
Helen Furnace Entrance image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, June 20, 2014
3. Helen Furnace Entrance
Helen Furnace Sign Rear image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, June 20, 2014
4. Helen Furnace Sign Rear
Helen Furnace, one of numerous iron furnaces in Clarion County, was built in 1845 on the Alexander McNaughton Farm by Robert Baker and William Packer.

This cold blast furnace was operational until 1857. In 1856, within a 26 week period of operation, the furnace generated 1,000 tons of iron.

Final ownership of the furnace belonged to Samuel Wilson.

Dimensions of the furnace are 32' high, 12' across at the top, 30' across at the bottom and had an 8' bosh.
Helen Furnace image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, June 20, 2014
5. Helen Furnace
Helen Furnace image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, June 20, 2014
6. Helen Furnace
Looking up through the chimney
Helen Furnace image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, June 20, 2014
7. Helen Furnace
Looking at the top from the rear. There used to be a catwalk from this point.
Helen Furnace Descriptive Sign image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, June 20, 2014
8. Helen Furnace Descriptive Sign
Hieland Furnace
Where you are standing is the beginning of what was the charge ramp of the iron furnace know as
Helen Furnace
Robert Barker and William S. Packer erected the furnace at the State and Clarion road crossing, on the old McNaughton farm, in 1845. The builders named it "Highland" Furnace in honor of Alexander McNaughton who prided himself in being a Highlander, but the word being pronounced after the Scottish dialect "Hieland" (Pronunciation with Scottish accent was heeland) the name was corrupted to "Helen" Furnace, leading to the erroneous supposition that it was christened with a feminine name. The name of the township was the same origin; it is commonly, but incorrectly, pronounced "Helen" township. In 1850 it was owned by W.S. Packer and Company. On Barber & Packer's failure the property for a short time was in the hands of David Richey, and was finally purchased by Samuel Wilson, with whom D. McKim, of Strattanville, Clarion County, Pennsylvania, was a partner for a while. The property passed into the hands of Samuel Wilson, who ran it till 1857. It was a two-tuyere Cold-blast Charcoal Furnace with an eight-foot bosh, thirty-two feet high, and powered by steam. In twenty-six weeks of 1856 it produced 756 tons of iron out of buhrstone coal measure ore mined back of the tunnel head. The Furnace was reconstructed in 1977.

Capacity in Tons................1,500 Kind of ore used................Argillareous Carbonate No. of Men & Boys Employed......100 No. of Horses & Mules Employed..70 Stack No. Tuyeres...............2 Stack Bosh......................9 feet Stack Height....................32 feet Kind of Power used..............Steam Kind of Metal made..............Close Gray Iron Largest Product.................1,500 Tons Actual Product in 1849..........1,000 Tons
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 325 times since then and 40 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.   3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. submitted on , by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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