My Daily Photo Walk: Catoctin Furnace Village

September 01, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

(Click any photo to enlarge; hover mouse over photo for caption.)

1 - CFV 11 - CFV 1 1 - CFV 21 - CFV 2Harriet Chapel Tourists driving north on Rt. 15 from the metro areas of Maryland on their way to Gettysburg probably don't realize how much history they are driving through on their way there.  As they pass by Springfield Manor and Auburn on the left, they are also passing by Catoctin Furnace Village on the right.  All played significant roles in the early history of our country, beginning in 1774, when James Johnson began construction on an iron furnace to smelt pig iron into useful household items, including tools and stoves.  During the American Revolution in 1776, ten inch mortars were produced at the furnace.
 
1 - CFV 31 - CFV 3Ironworkers home, nearly original condition. 1 - CFV 51 - CFV 5Private home in former ironworkers home. During its years of iron production there were two furnaces, named Isabella and Deborah.  A third was located elsewhere.  Isabella remains in its original location today.  Around the furnace was a complete iron workers village, with small stone homes for workers, a log cabin for the collier, and an iron master's quarters.  A number of the small homes remain intact, and some are owned by the historical society and slated for restoration.
 
1 - CFV 41 - CFV 4Collier's log home James Johnson's home was Springfield, and his brother Baker built Auburn.  Another brother, Thomas, became the first governor of Maryland.  John and Harriet Brien later owned Auburn, and it is Brien who is responsible for the construction of Harriet Chapel, which is still an active part of the Episcopal Diocese.  The chapel was erected in memory of his wife, as well as for the use of the workers.
 
There is so much more I could tell you about this place, but you can read it for yourself:  www.catoctinfurnace.org.  The next meeting of the Catoctin Furnace Village Historical Society is September 8 at noon in the museum of the ironworker, and all are welcome.  
 
 
All photos in “My Daily Photo Walk" are for sale upon request.

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