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Lukens Steel Company records
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Lukens Steel Company records

Accession 0050

Manuscripts and Archives Department, Hagley Museum and Library

PO Box 3630
Wilmington, Delaware, 19807

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2014-05-28T14:49-0400

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Cite items for this collection in the following format:
[Description and dates], Box/folder number, Lukens Steel Company records (Accession 0050), Hagley Museum and Library, Wilmington, DE 19807


Descriptive Summary

Title: Lukens Steel Company records
Dates: 1798-1993
Accession Number: 0050
Creator: Lukens Steel Company; Lukens, Inc.
Extent: 720 linear feet; 3 microfilm reels; 5,390 photographs
Language of Material: English
Repository: Hagley Museum and Library: Manuscripts and Archives Department
Abstract: Lukens Steel Company was a medium-sized producer of specialty steel products and one of the top three U.S. producers of steel plate. The Lukens Steel Company records documents all aspects of the business from the early 19th century through the 1970s.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

Records subject to 25-year time seal.

Use Restrictions

Literary rights retained by depositor.

A portion of these records are located in remote storage. Please allow at least 24 hours for retrieval.


Historical Note

The Lukens Steel Company was incorporated in Pennsylvania on January 17, 1917, as successor to the Lukens Iron & Steel Company of 1890. It was renamed Lukens, Inc., on April 14, 1982, and reincorporated in Delaware on January 28, 1987. Lukens was a medium-sized producer of specialty steel products and one of the top three U.S. producers of steel plate. Lukens was merged into the Bethlehem Steel Corporation on May 29, 1998, and the Coatesville Plant survived the Bethlehem bankruptcy to become part of Mittal Acelor.


Scope and Content

The Lukens Steel Company records documents all aspects of the company's business from the early 19th century through the 1970s.

Order books (1842-1903), sales records (1840-1908), and account books (1798-1917) document financial transactions and list major suppliers and customers. Of particular note is the day book of Rebecca Lukens (1842-1844). Production records include records from the puddling mill (1873-1886) and the open hearth (1892-1907), as well as tonnage books (1891-1918). This material documents the transition from iron to steel production. Payrolls and wage books (1864-1904) show wage payments and the impact of technological change on wages and working conditions.

Corporate records include copies of minutes, board of directors' files, monthly and annual reports, and reports of departments, divisions, and committees. Accounting records include account books (1798-1938), auditors reports, and financial statements. General correspondence (1840-1906) is concerned with orders, sales, managerial and labor problems.

Executive officer files are primarily those of the vice presidents. They describe the evolution of the company from the early 1900s to the early 1970s, including the modernization of physical plant, the development of more bureaucratic management methods, changing markets and product mix, company contributions to World War II, and the recruitment of black and immigrant labor. There are also news releases, clippings and publications from the Public Relations Dept.

The historical miscellany deals primarily with company anniversaries and the Lukens/Huston family. The most important item is an 1825 autobiographical memoir by Rebecca Lukens. There are also anti-Bolshevik editorial cartoons (1919) and a poster regarding the SWOC drive at Bethlehem Steel.

Records of subsidiary and related companies include minutes, maps and reports of the Alleghany Ore & Iron Company. Drawings, blueprints and specifications of the Jacobs-Shupert United States Firebox Company document the use of Lukens steel in locomotive boilers. There are records on companies in which the Hustons had outside investments, such as the Belmont Iron Works of Philadelphia and the Florence Mining & Milling Co. of Marysville, Utah. There are also account books, time books and scattered payrolls for two early iron works unrelated to Lukens: the Laurel Iron Works (1854-1857) and the Triadelphia Iron Works (1847-1851), both owned by the Steele and Worth families.

The photographs include portraits of members of the Lukens and Huston families and over 5,200 views of the Coatesville plant, processes and products. Photographs from the 1880s show the old mill buildings shortly before their replacement and include views of interiors and employees. The bulk of the photographs, including many shots of company employees, were taken for the Public Relations Department, ca. 1930-1955.



I. Corporate records; II. Accounting records; III. Production and labor records; IV. Purchasing and receiving records; V. Sales and shipping records; VI. General correspondence; VII. Executive officer files; VIII. New Orleans office records; IX. Lukens Athletic Association; X. Maps and drawings; XI. Historical miscellany; XII. Records of subsidiary companies; XIII. Photographs


Access Points

A. Gibbons, Jr., & Company.
African American iron and steel workers.
Baldwin Locomotive Works.
Bath Iron Works, Ltd.
Belmont Iron Works (Philadelphia, Pa.).
Bethlehem Steel Company.
Blast furnaces--Virginia.
Brandywine Iron Works (Coatesville, Pa.).
Brandywine Iron Works and Nail Factory (Coatesville, Pa.).
By-Products Steel Corporation.
Charles Huston & Sons.
Chester County (Pa.)--Industries.
Child labor.
Coal mines and mining--West Virginia.
Coatesville (Pa.)--History.
Coatesville (Pa.)--Industries.
Coatesville Relief Association.
Collective bargaining--Iron industry.
Collective bargaining--Steel industry.
Company stores.
Corliss Steam Engine Company.
Cornell Steamboat Company.
Electric welding.
Federal Slitting Mill (Rokeby, Pa.).
Florence Mining and Milling Company.
General Boat Works, Inc.
Gibbons & Huston.
Gibbons, Abraham, 1812-1895.
Huston & Penrose.
Huston, A. F., (Abram Francis),), 1852-1930.
Huston, Charles L., (Charles Lukens),), 1906-1982.
Huston, Charles Lukens, 1856-1951.
Huston, Charles, 1822-1897.
Huston, Penrose & Company.
Huston, Stewart, 1898-1971.
Industrial accidents.
Industrial relations.
Industrial safety.
Iron and steel workers--Pennsylvania.
Iron foundries.
Iron industry and trade--Health aspects.
Iron industry and trade--Pennsylvania--Chester County.
Iron industry and trade--Pennsylvania--Philadelphia.
Iron, Structural.
Iron-works--Pennsylvania--Chester County.
Jacobs-Shupert United States Firebox Company.
Kemble & Warner.
Kemble, Peter, 1825-1887.
Kemble, William, 1795?-1881.
Lancaster Locomotive Works.
Laurel Iron Works (Newlin, Pa. : Township).
Lehigh Valley Railroad Company.
Locomotive boilers.
Lukens Co-operative Store, Ltd.
Lukens Coal Company, Inc.
Lukens Erecting Company, Inc.
Lukens Iron Works (Coatesville, Pa.).
Lukens Iron and Steel Company. -- Form subdivision--Archives.;
Lukens Steel Company--Form subdivision--Archives.
Lukens, Charles, 1786-1825.
Lukens, Inc.--Form subdivision--Archives.
Lukens, Rebecca W. (Rebecca Webb), 1794-1854.
Lukenweld, Inc.
Manley & Cooper Manufacturing Company.
Mechanical engineering.
Metal cladding.
Norris Locomotive Works.
Open-hearth furnaces.
Open-hearth process.
Pennock, Isaac, 1767-1824.
Penrose, Charles, d. 1882.
Plates, Iron and steel.
Potash industry and trade--Utah.
Pusey, Jones & Company.
R.W. Lukens & Company.
Research, Industrial.
Rolling-mills--Pennsylvania--Chester County.
Steam locomotives--Fireboxes.
Steam-boilers, Marine.
Steel industry and trade--Health aspects.
Steel industry and trade--Pennsylvania--Chester County.
Steel plate industry.
Steel, Structural.
Steel-works--Pennsylvania--Chester County.
Steele & Worth.
Steele, Hugh E. (Hugh Exton), 1815-1874.
Strikes and lockouts--Iron industry.
Strikes and lockouts--Steel Industry.
Thomas Iron Company.
Trade associations.
Triadelphia Iron Works (Coatesville, Pa.).
Utah--Potash industry and trade.
Voluntary employees' beneficiary associations.
Wages--Iron and steel workers.
Wawasset Beneficial Society.
Winans, Ross, 1796-1877.
Wolcott, Robert W. (Robert Wilson), 1892-1982.
Worth Brothers Company.