This historic structure was built at the peak of the iron industry in 1868. The furnace once produced high-quality iron used for railroad wheels and rails.
As you roam the grounds and explore this innovative construction, enjoy the opportunity to step back in time. Imagine a place with workers bustling about, often laboring in extreme temperatures to keep the furnace in steady production. Envision the town and surrounding community where more than 100 families lived nearby.
Fitchburg Furnace was the last charcoal-burning iron furnace built in America. With its massive stones and intricate design, the furnace ranks among the top 25 dry-stone masonry structures in the world.
The U.S. Forest Service acknowledges with gratitude the partners who help maintain and protect the furnace, including Friends of the Fitchburg Furnace and Aldersgate Camp and Retreat Center.
2010 Stabilization and Research Project
The U.S. Forest Service and Friends of the Fitchburg Furnace completed two phases of stabilization and research for Fitchburg Furnace in 2010.
Phase I included a roof installation to help protect the furnace from rain and freezing water. The foundation along the left corner of the structure was stabilized with massive reinforced concrete underground.
Phase II restored deteriorated portions of the furnace and uncovered hundreds of historic artifacts. A drainage system was established to take water away from the foundation.
Thirty-five huge stones originally cut in 1868-1869 at the nearby Fitchburg quarry were used to replace missing stones in the facade and furnace interior.
About This Area
Fitchburg Furnace is located on the Cumberland Ranger District of the Daniel Boone National Forest. The Daniel Boone National Forest is part of the Forest Service, the federal agency within the U.S. Department of Agriculture that manages national forests and grasslands for multiple uses.
What you find here stays here.
Artifacts represent pieces of history, providing valuable clues to the past. When artifacts are removed or disturbed, it's like pages taken from a book. Once the pages are gone, the story is ruined.
The taking of artifacts or disturbing archaeological sites on national forest land is illegal.