Oxford Furnace historyCreation: 1944-1946
The Oxford Furnace in Warren County, New Jersey, was one of the oldest blast-furnaces in the state. The records consist of two drafts in ozalid copy of a typescript collection of letters and articles on the history of Oxford Furnace.
- Creation: 1944-1946
- Harte, Charles Rufus, 1870-1956 (Compiler, Person)
The Oxford Furnace in Warren County, New Jersey, was one of the oldest blast-furnaces in the state. It was constructed by Jonathan Robeson of Philadelphia from 1741 to 1742 and placed in blast on March 9, 1743. It was thereafter owned and operated by members of the Robeson and Shippen families. In 1831 it was leased by the firm of Henry, Jordan & Company, who were succeeded by George W. & Selden T. Scranton. Selden T. Scranton organized the Oxford Iron Company in 1863, but it failed in 1878. It was reorganized as the Oxford Iron & Nail Company in 1880, but the development of Great Lakes ores and the mass production of wire nails destroyed the market for old-fashioned cut nails, and the furnace was blown out in 1884.
The new furnace of 1871 was revived briefly but failed again in 1895. The property was purchased by the Empire Steel & Iron Company in 1898 and operated successfully until 1921. The Empire Steel & Iron Company was purchased by the Replogle Steel Company in 1922, and they assigned the property to another subsidiary, the Warren Pipe & Foundry Corp. The furnace was deeded to the state as a historic site in November 1935. The mines and other property were sold to the Alan Wood Steel Company in 1941.
Scope and Contents
The records consist of two drafts in ozalid copy of a typescript collection of letters and articles on the history of Oxford Furnace. The only difference between the 1944 and 1946 versions is the addition of a letter of the Rev. A. G. Yount containing further comments and notes. The typescript contains a number of photos of the furnace at different periods, along with one view of the ironmaster's mansion.
The compilation begins with a manuscript history of the early years of the Oxford Furnace written by S. L. Nicholson, ca. 1911. Subsequent letters (1943-1946) solicited by Mr. Harte from persons associated with the furnace flesh out the history and bring it down to 1935. Harte also reproduces the relevant pages of Charles Boyer's Early Forges and Furnaces in New Jersey. Subsequent letters correct errors in Boyer's text.
No restrictions on access; this collection is open for research.
Language of Materials
- Empire Steel and Iron Company (Organization)
Finding Aid & Administrative Information
- Oxford Furnace history
- Description rules:
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description:
- Script of description:
- 2021: Ashley Williams