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Midvale Steel Company plant album
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Midvale Steel Company plant album

Accession 1974.362

Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department, Hagley Museum and Library


PO Box 3630
Wilmington, Delaware, 19807
302-658-2400
askhagley@hagley.org

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2019-07-17T14:56-0400

Finding aid prepared using best local practices and Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Cite items for this collection in the following format:
[Description and dates], Box/folder number, Midvale Steel Company plant album (Accession 1974.362), Hagley Museum and Library, Wilmington, DE 19807

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Descriptive Summary

Title: Midvale Steel Company plant album
Dates: circa 1905
Accession Number: 1974.362
Creator: Midvale Steel and Ordnance Company.
Extent: 1 items
Physical Description: 1 album : boards covered in black leather ; 12.5 x 17 in. (closed). Containing 82 photographic prints : b&w ; 10 x 13 in. The album has been unbound for preservation purposes.
Language of Material: English
Repository: Hagley Museum and Library: Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department
Abstract: The Midvale Steel Company manufactured steel parts for the railroad industry and the armaments industry. The company was known for casting, forging, and machining high-quality steels, including alloy steels. This album contains photographs showing exteriors and interiors of Midvale Steel facilities in the Nicetown area of Germantown.
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Administrative Information


Existence and Location of Copies

View the collection online in Hagley's Digital Archives

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

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Historical Note

The Midvale Steel Company manufactured steel parts for the railroad industry and the armaments industry. The company was known for casting, forging, and machining high-quality steels, including alloy steels.

Immediately following the Civil War, several Philadelphia businessmen established a steelworks in the Nicetown area of Germantown. In 1872 it became known as the Midvale Steel Works, with the famous engineer William Sellers (1824-1905) as president. Its major products were railroad wheels cast from open-hearth steel, one of the earliest uses of this type of steel in the United States. Midvale Steel was notable also for its early experimentation with alloy steels, producing specialty products used in both the Eads Bridge in St. Louis and the Brooklyn Bridge. Frederick W. Taylor (1856-1915), famous efficiency expert, spent much of his early career at Midvale, becoming their chief engineer before leaving to work for the Bethlehem Steel Company.

The name was changed to the Midvale Steel Company in 1880. In 1895 Midvale began the manufacture of ordnance, including large naval guns and shells, and in 1900 they started making marine engines. With the rapid expansion brought about by World War I the company became the Midvale Steel and Ordnance Company in 1915, with plants in Johnstown and Coatesville, Pennsylvania, as well as the original works in Philadelphia. In 1917 Midvale ranked among the top twenty American corporations in revenue, but in 1923 all the company's properties except the Philadelphia works were acquired by the Bethlehem Steel Company. The one remaining plant in Nicetown was operated as the Midvale Company from then on.

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Scope and Content

This album contains photographs showing exteriors and interiors of Midvale Steel facilities in the Nicetown area of Germantown. There are also close-ups of machinery, products (including naval guns, railroad wheels, propellers, and miscellaneous castings), and tests of armor plate. All items in the collection are captioned as listed below.

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Access Points

Armor-plate.
Factories.
Machinery.
Marine engineering.
Ordnance--Manufacture.
Steel industry and trade.
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Series Descriptions and Inventory

Volume Page
1 1 General view of works; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 2 End view of hydraulic press plant and open hearth plant No. 3, exterior; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
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1 3 9000 ton hydraulic forging press; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 4 Portion of press ship showing one of hydraulic presses forging a jacket for a 12-inch rifle; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 5 A group of regenerative heating furnaces in press plant; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 6 Part of the press plant boiler house, interior; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 7 Front side of open-hearth plant No.3, showing the 50-ton furnaces and one of the electric charging machines; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 8 Casting pit of open hearth plant No. 3; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 9 End of axle billet yard, exterior; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 10 Storage yard for small ingots; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 11 Double-acting steam hammer stroke 12 ft. combined steam pressure and falling water = 90 Tons; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 12 A group of steam hammers; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 13 One of the two-ton steam hammers; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 14 Part of the tool steel forge; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 15 Blacksmith shop; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 16 A twelve inch mill; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 17 Exterior of steel foundry; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 18 Interior of steel foundry; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 19 Cupola end of iron foundry; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 20 Exterior of steel foundry and oil tempering plants No.2 and No. 3; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 21 Annealing plant No.2, interior; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 22 Interior of gun tempering plant No.3, showing 12-inch gun tube, 41 ft. long; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 23 A group of locomotives; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 24 Power-house, showing electric power generators; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 25 Power-house, showing electric light generators; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 26 A group of machine shops for ordnance and heavy forgings; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 27 Ordnance machine shop No.1, interior; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 28 Projectile Turning Department, interior; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 29 No.2 gun shop, interior; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 30 A bay of gun shop No. 2; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 31 Part of central span of ordnance machine shop No. 2; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 32 Shrinkage pit and furnaces in No. 2 gun shop extension; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 33 A group of motor-driven tools in ordnance machine shop No.2 extension; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 34 Tire-turning shop; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 35 Products of tire mills, locomotive and car wheel tires, grinding rings, weldless steel flanges etc.; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 36 A group of nickel steel forgings for 8 inch and 10 inch rifles; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 37 Forged nickel steel air flasks and heads for 20 inch whitehead torpedos for U.S. Navy; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 38 Steel castings for bottom head of 9000 ton forging press; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 39 Steel casting for half of top head of 9000 ton forging press (160,000 lbs.); 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 40 Shipment of nine cast steel slag bowls; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 41 Cast-steel disc for 5000 K.W. steam turbine; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 42 Steel casting for locomotive driving wheel centre and armour plate dies; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 43 Group of miscellaneous steel castings; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 44 Shaft with cast steel propeller and combined forged and cast steel anchor; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 45 Group of cast steel anchors, U.S. Navy type; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 46-47 Two triple expansion marine engines; 2 photographic prints : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 48 One of four triple-expansion marine engines; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 49 Shipment of crank shafts; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 50 Hydraulic hollow-forged steel shaft; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 51 Hollow forges steel generator shaft & 1 hydraulic hollow forged steel shaft; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 52 Crank shafting for water works pumps and solid forged steel crank shafting for gas engines; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 53 Solid forged steel crank and thrust shafts for torpedo boast; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 54 Type of solid forged nickel Steel crank shaft for torpedo Boast and solid forged two-throw crank shaft; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 55 Crank shafts for torpedo boats; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 56 Rank shaft for cruisers; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 57 Crank shafts for merchant service; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 58-59 Drawing, crank shaft; 2 photographic prints : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 60-62 Chart of government results from tangential bars from guns; 1 photographic prints : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 63 Drawing, 8 inch turrets, guns, mounts; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 64-65 8 inch 45 caliber steel rifles on naval mounts; 2 photographic prints : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 66-67 10 inch rifle on disappearing carriage of 1896 model; 2 photographic prints : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 68-69 12 inch rifle on disappearing carriage of 1897 model; 2 photographic prints : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 70-71 12 inch rifle on disappearing carriage of 1901 model; 2 photographic prints : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 72 Forged steel shot and shell, 57mm to 13 inch; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 73 Ordnance machine shop No.4 armoured plate, exterior; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 74 Steel ingot 320,000 lbs. for forging two throw crank shaft; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 75 Rifle target; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.
Volume Page
1 76-82 Proving ground letter; 7 photographic prints : b&w ; 10 x 13 in.