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Wellston Furnace iron 1909

Eliza Furnace

Eliza Furnace was built by Harvey Wells and was named for his wife. His wife was also the daughter of H. S. Bundy, who held interests in several iron furnaces. It was located on East 10th street in the city of Wellston. Per Robert Ervin the furnace was built in 1877 and went into blast in October. After 9 months, Wells leased the furnace to John C. H. Cobb, but depressed business conditions forced the furnace to close three months later. It closed until 1891, being purchased by H. S. Bundy. Bundy remodeled the furnace and operated it until 1890. It passed into receivership of Bundy and H. S. Williard and was dismantled in 1891.

Wellston Steel and Iron Company first know as Wellston Twin Furnaces

Some History of the Wellston Iron & Steel Company also known as the Wellston Twin Furnaces.

The Wellston furnaces were built in the area north of Edgewood Manor in the city of Wellston in 1875 by the Wellston Coal & Iron Company. According to Robert Ervin the furnace was organized by Harvey Wells and a group of investors from Washington Court House, Ohio. Financial difficulties ensued and the furnaces did not operate for three years (1876-1879). H. S. Bundy took control of the furnaces in 1879 and operated them for five years. In 1884, a group of investors founded the Wellston Coal Company and purchased the furnace operations. Principal investors were T. J. Morgan Wellston, William T. McClintock and Amos Smith (Chillicothe). The new owners leased the furnace to King, Gilbert and Warner of Columbus, Ohio. J.C. Clutts joined the new firm in 1888 as general manager. The furnace operated until 1893 when the depression caused it to go into receivership, with H. S. Williard as the receiver. He continued to operate the furnace during this period. Then, on July 12, 1894, the furnaces were purchased by the Wellston Iron and Steel Company. This was a new firm organized by Joseph C. Clutts (President), H. S. Williard (Secretary), and L.C. Vogelsang (General Manager). In 1905, Williard bought out Clutts and reorganized the company as the Wellston Steel and Iron Company. M. L Sternberger was a major shareholder in the new firm and became the President. The furnaces operated throughout the first World War but closed down in 1923. They were dismantled in 1929 and the site is now the Wellston City Park.

The Furnace is in close proximity to the Richland Railroad tunnel. In its operation, it provided for easy access for rail transport of it's iron product.

Take Chillicothe Street west in Hamden. Follow the road, cross the RR tracks twice. Then follow the RR, the road will dead end at a RR overpass. Park, climb up and follow the tracks to your right to the first crossing. Go right again, furance will be on the right.

1901 map showing rail road and Richland

Milton Furnace

Milton Furnace was located on East 2nd Street. The Milton Iron and Coal Company was formed on July 28th, 1873 with a total capital of $100,000. Principals were: Alanson Robbins (President), A.A. Austin, H. G. Lasley, H. S. Williard, J. E. Ferree (Secretary), J. W. Morely, and L. W. French (Storekeeper). The business operated until 1886. In that year, F. E. Hinkley (a Chicago promoter) introduced a scheme to make Wellston a boom town. The plan was to sell lots and make huge profits in the process. After purchasing the company, Hinckley defaulted and the Milton Furnace came under the ownership of the First National Bank of Chicago. The bank sold the furnace to J. C. Clutts. The Wellston Iron and Steel Company operated the Milton furnace until 1916. Because of a disagreement among the shareholders, the Milton site was sold at court auction on June 5th, 1916 to H. S. Williard and his son H. S. Williard, Jr. They operated Milton Furnace until it closed in 1923.

Wellston Steel and Iron Company around 1910

Letterhead of the Wellston Iron Furnace Company (twin furnaces)

Dr. Raymond Boothe Collection

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Or mail to Waverly City Guide, 455 Hay Hollow Road, Chillicothe, Ohio 45601

Wellston Steel and Iron company around 1910The Wellston Steel & Iron Company operated throughout WWI , closed in 1925 , and was dismantled in 1929.  Location was the site of the Wellston City Park north of Edgewood Manor

Iron Industry in Wellston, Ohio

An 1872 photo of Richland [Iron] Furnace at Jackson Co., Ohio which was served by the Marietta & Cincinnati Railroad. Richland Furnace began operation in 1854 and was built by "Westfall, Stewart, and others". and it closed February 13, 1884. A property manager was employed until 1909.

The furnace itself, or stack as it was called, is under the large barn-like structure in the middle. To its right is the track upon which John A. Lewis, one of the men who hauled the ore in a car drawn by oxen, from a switch off the mainline of the M&C RR.

The large open-ended building is for storage of charcoal and limestone. The lower building was either the office or engine room where a large steam engine ran a blower to blast air into the hearth of the stack. The shingle-roofed casting shed is in the left foreground.

Information from Mark Howell

1913 Adv. Letterhead - Wellston Iron & Metal Co.