Washington Furnace Washington Furnace
Washington Furnace Washington Furnace
Blast Pipe Blast Pipe Closeup of Flange Engine House
Blast Pipe Blast Pipe Closeup of Flange Engine House


Washington Furnace is in very poor condition. The entire inner portion is filled with fallen rubble, including the inner firebrick and upper stack. There are two tuyeres, both almost buried in the ground fill. The area in front of the furnace is swampy and may be slowly undermining the furnace, although it does appear to be elevated above the wet area. The area above the furnace has evidence of large slag formations and some salamanders. It is highly possible that a large salamander damaged the fn and it was never repaired, but this supposition needs to be investigated. There are a number of interesting features on the LH side of the fn, including a blast pipe and associated cover. I found evidence of a pipe in the hill next to the blast tube, most probably one of the steam or water pipes for the hot blast.

First Visited: 1Q 2002

Last Visited: 1Q 2004


Start of Operation: 1853 (Lesley reports 1852)

Blowout: ?

Daily Tonnage: 7-8 tons per day

Built By: John Cambell, John Peters, & Others

Stack: 34 feet w/11 foot bosh

Blast: Hot

Type: Charcoal

According to the Lawrence Register, Washington Furnace was built in 1851 by John Peters. He superintended the construction of the furnace. He was a part owner in the furnace, along with Samuel McConnnel, Isaac Peters, John Cambell, W.M. Bowles, and Thomas McGovney.

Per J.P. Lesley, the ch fn was owned by J. Peters & Co., S. McConnell financial agent, and managed by William Colvin. In thirty seven weeks of 1857 the fn produced 1,967 of iron out of limestone coal measure ores.


Take route 93 south from Jackson to Blackfork. Go past the first exit to Blackfork and turn at the second road to the right, where the school and church are located. Go past the church and make the first left. The furnace will be off the road to the left.

GPS - N38 50.150 W82 35.963 @728 feet

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