Saturday, September 8, 2007

Mt. Torry Furnace




An historic marker identified this spot as Mt. Torry Furnace, and a web search led to this blurb on the National Register of Historic Places explaining its significance.
"Mt. Torry Furnace is situated at the foot of Torry Ridge, north of Route 600 and Back Creek. The furnace is located within the George Washington and Jefferson National Forests in an area of young deciduous trees. Originally the Mt. Torry iron furnace complex included the iron furnace and its support facilities, as well as structures necessary to support the workers and animals who operated the h c e . The original cold-blast charcoal stack was built in 1804; its
original dimensions are unknown. It was converted for hot blast in 1853, and was 35' tall and 11' across the bosh. The furnace was constructed of dry-laid local stone with a brick chimney. It was connected to an embankment to the northeast by a charging bridge over which iron ore, limestone flux, and charcoal were wheeled and dumped into the central, brick-lined cavity. A casting house where molten iron was formed into pigs and sows in sand molds was located on the tap arch side of the fiunace. The tub bellows that produced a blast were powered by a waterwheel set close to the stack. A race ran to the waterwheel north of the h c e . The base structures were burned during the Civil War, but were rebuilt in 1866.
"The extant Mt. Torry Furnace is a stone square trapezoid. The outside stone structure is about 30 feet wide, and 40 feet tall. The northeast side of the h c e has collapsed and the stack has caved in. Although parts of the exterior structure are intact, much reconstruction and stabilization has taken place since the Forest Service acquired the property. The tap arch
has metal supports and is 15' wide and about 25' high. No brick or lining material is evident. Historically the fUmace was approached fiom the north. The ramp up to the bridge to the charging deck begins to the north. There is a multi-acre slag pit between Back Creek and Route 664, southeast of the furnace. An unnamed tributary of Back Creek was the feeder source for
the wheel race. Neither a wheel pii nor the tuyere arch was located; these may have been located on the side that has collapsed. A stone wall that may have supported blast equipment is northwest of the furnace."

2 comments:

purnawan said...

Thanks for the ideas and information, it really helped me in doing my job.

AP McCracken said...

And what, may I ask, is your job? Just curious. Glad this post was of help.