Tannehill Ironworks Historic State Park
McCalla, Alabama Page6

Photos/Text courtesy of Steven Hippensteel, AL
Webmaster for any use of the following  photos

(March 2009) Enlarge Bearing housings, skillet lids and dinner plate
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(March 2009) Enlarge Horn anvil


(March 2009) Enlarge Furnace bell (ca 1860) Found At Tannehill Furnace: Bells, like this one, were used at furnace sites to summon work crews to specific tasks. For instance, when the "founder" gave the signal to tap a furnace, a bell called the workers to their place in the casting house. First the "keeper" unplugged the top hole, allowing the liquid slag to drain off to one side. Once the slag was drawn off, the lower plug was removed. Workers called "guttermen" guided the flow of molten iron into a central channel in the sand. Attached at right angles were smaller depressions to each side into which iron would flow from the main channel. This action produced "pig iron" ingots, which after cooling were shipped to foundries to be cast into products

  (March 2009) Enlarge Solidified ladle of iron

(March 2009) Enlarge Mystery casting ca. 1865: Bearing the imprint "RVIC-WLS" (for Roupes Valley Iron Company - William L. Saunders, Proprietor) Possibly a test piece or miscast due to sand shift. Typically imprinted pieces were destined for the Selma Arsenal on specific order


(March 2009) Enlarge Balance wheel for small steam engine ca. 1865: Found in the Tannehill furnace canal by University of Alabama, 1990. It was likely a late casting or a spare part

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