Historic Markers Across Alabama

Cornwall Furnace

Marker ID:  
Location: at the Cornwall Furnace Memorial Park, County Road 251, Cedar Bluff AL
County: Cherokee
Coordinates: N 34° 14.813    W 085° 35.319
  34.24688333    -85.58865
Style: Mounted **
Waymark: WMCT1Z


The Confederate States of America in 1862 commissioned the Noble Brothers of Rome, Georgia to erect a cold blast furnace to produce needed pig iron from the war effort.

The skilled labor was detailed from Confederate army personnel. It is estimated that 1000 laborers were employed in building the canal, tunnel and mining brown hematite rock used in building the furnace in less than a year.

The furnace output was small (6 tons daily) but an important asset to the Confederacy in building cannon, carriage and caisson. Some of the first military equipment used in the war was made from Cornwall Iron.

The life of Cornwall was relatively short lived - Gen. Sherman occupying Cedar Bluff and Gaylesville ordered the furnace destroyed in 1864 and on two occasions sent detachments for this purpose but the furnace still stands - perhaps the best preserved stack in the Southeast.

The furnace was put back in operation in 1867 but blown out forever in 1875.

Erected 1976 by Cherokee County Historical Society / Cherokee County Soil and Water Conservation District.

End of Cornwall Furnace