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Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site

2 Mark Bird Lane, Elverson, PA 19520
Sample works produced at Hopewell Furnace

Sample works produced at Hopewell Furnace.

Photo credit: By Sdwelch1031 (Own work) [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site in southeastern Berks County is an example of an American 19th century rural "iron plantation". The buildings include a blast furnace, the ironmaster's house and auxiliary structures including a blacksmith's shop, a company store and several worker's houses. Hopewell Furnace was founded in 1771 by ironmaster Mark Bird, Son of William Bird, for whom Birdsboro was named. The site's most prosperous time was during the 1820–1840 period with a brief boom in production during the American Civil War. In the mid 19th century changes in iron making, including a shift from charcoal to anthracite rendered smaller furnaces like Hopewell obsolete. The site discontinued operations in 1883. Today, Hopewell Furnace consists of 14 restored structures in the core historic area, 52 features on the List of Classified Structures, and a total of 848 mostly wooded acres.

This description includes material adapted from the Wikipedia article "Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0. It has been edited for brevity and to conform with the style of this website. The edited description is distributed under the terms of the same Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0 license.