Story Bibliography
Unknown control: title
The Pennsylvania Iron Industry: Furnace and Forge of America Bibliography
Further Reading

Bartholomew, Craig L and Lance E Metz. The Anthracite Iron Industry of the Lehigh Valley. . Easton: Center for Canal History and Technology, 1998.

The best history of Lehigh Valley ironworks during the mid- and late nineteenth century when anthracite furnaces dominated; includes very good details on selected iron companies and furnaces.

Bezis-Selfa, John. Forging America: Ironworkers, Adventurers, and the Industrial Revolution. . Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2004.

Examines the social and labor history of the national industry during the eighteenth century and first decades of the nineteenth, with a focus on the importance of slave labor in the industry.

Bining, Arthur C. Pennsylvania Iron Manufacture in the Eighteenth Century. Harrisburg: Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, 1973.

Originally published in 1938, and republished in 1973 with minor revisions, this work is the most detailed account of the eighteenth century iron industry, improving on James M. Swank's History of the Manufacture of Iron in All Ages in accuracy.

Eggert, Gerald G. The Iron Industry in Pennsylvania. Harrisburg: Pennsylvania Historical Association, 1994.

This slim (98-page) volume is the best overview of the Pennsylvania iron industry from its inception until the Great Depression; it includes social, economic, and labor aspects of the industry's history.

Ingham, John N. Making Iron and Steel, Independent Mills in Pittsburgh, 1820-1920. Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 1991.

Excellent history of mills in Pittsburgh, a national center for iron manufacturing, including the strategies that independent iron firms pursued to counter competition from tonnage steel mills.

Overman, Frederick. The Manufacture of Iron in All Its Various Branches. Philadelphia: Henry C. Baird,, 1854.

A detailed, technical examination of the technology, iron ores and fuel sources used in the national iron industry circa 1850, by a mining engineer; offers a contemporary perspective that is quite different from later histories of the industry.

Paskoff, Paul F. Industrial Evolution: Organization, Structure, and Growth of the Pennsylvania Iron Industry, 1750-1860.. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1983.

Excellent analysis of the business and economic history of the iron industry, including business organization and management.

Stevens, Sylvester K. The Centre Furnace Story: A Return to Our Roots. Edited by Philip S. Klein State College, PA: The Centre County Historical Society, 1985.

A very good overview of the history of this Juniata-region iron plantation.

Swank, James M. History of the Manufacture of Iron in All Ages.. New York, NY: Burt Franklin, 1892.

A history of the national iron industry to 1891, with ample details on Pennsylvania furnaces and forges; it contains some inaccurate details, many of which were corrected by Arthur C. Bining in Pennsylvania Iron Manufacture in the Eighteenth Century.

Temin, Peter. Iron and Steel in Nineteenth-Century America: An Economic Inquiry. Cambridge: The M.I.T. Press, 1964.

This work, which is an overview of the United States industry, provides a national context for the economic growth of the Pennsylvania industry.

Walker, Joseph E. Hopewell Village: A Social and Economic History of an Iron-Making Community. . Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1966.

An outstanding history of this iron plantation, with excellent detail on the lives of ironmasters, workers and their families

Web Guide

Anthracite Heritage Museum, Scranton Iron Furnaces

Photographs and history of Scranton Iron Furnaces, a historic site which includes the remaining anthracite furnaces of the Lackawanna Iron and Coal Company works.

Centre County Historical Society

The web site of the Centre County Historical Society, which operates the restored Centre Furnace mansion and reconstructed furnace, offers information about the mansion and furnace.

Cornwall Iron Furnace

The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission operates Cornwall Iron Furnace, a very well preserved charcoal furnace. This web site has information about the historic site, including events, hours, and directions.

Historical Society of the Phoenixville Area

Has detailed information on the history of the Phoenix Iron Company, including its important bridge fabrication business.

Industrial archaeology, iron furnaces

Includes photos, histories, descriptions and directions to numerous iron furnaces in Pennsylvania; especially useful for learning about and visiting various iron furnaces across the Commonwealth

National Park Service, Hopewell Village

The National Park Service runs Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site, a partially restored iron plantation. This web site features information about the history and restored buildings of Hopewell Village, as well as hours and directions.

Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and National Resources, "Greenwood Furnace,"

The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and National Resources runs a state park at Greenwood Furnace. This web site has information about the site's history, including its history after the furnace ceased production, as well as hours, directions and photos.

Back to Top