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Presidents Furnace Front Opening Front Stone Rear of Furnace
President Furnace Front Opening Front Stone Rear of Furnace
Retaining Wall Retaining Wall
Retaining Wall Retaining Wall

Description

Presidents Furnace is unusual in that it is round. This is the first type of round furnace ever encountered, although later in the trip I found the same structure at Valley Furnace (Venango County).

The stack has fallen and is in very poor condition. The retaining wall for the charging ramp lies just to th eupper left of the furnace. I could only see the front tuyere, no side tuyeres were evident, but they may be buried in the rubble. The front stone is huge - over five feet loong and about 2-1/2 feet square. The nearby millrace is clearly evident and contains extensive slag deposits. The slag is very porous and indicates a poor blast condition.

First Visited: 3Q 2003

History

Start of Operation: 1854/55

Blowout: 1858-60?

Daily Tonnage:

Built By: Ralph Clapp

Stack:

Blast: Cold

Type: Charcoal

In 1846 Ralph Clapp settled with his wife and six children at Presidents furnace. He built the iron furnace many years later, but the period for profitable iron production soon came to an end and the furnace was abandoned.

Directions

Take US62 East from Oil City for 11 miles. Turn right onto SR2029, then almost immediately turn left (paralleling US62). Follow this road until it dead ends at the cabins and the river. Go to the back door of the red cabin and sight the large tree as a marker. Walk straight up the hill and the furnace will be approximately 50 yards up the rise. You will be 30-40 degree angle to the river.

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