NEXT MEETING

THURSDAY - MAY 15
7:00 PM

MOUNT VERNON FURNACE GROUNDS
AT THE STONE CABIN
484 PARK ROAD
WOODDALE, PA

"Our Members, Volunteers, and Friends
are our most valuable assests"

 General Industries

     Early Bullskin Township had a wide variety of industries and occupations.  Listed here are just a few which included: Farming, Grist and Saw Mills, Tanneries, Distilleries, Blacksmiths, Wagon Makers, Laborers, Iron Furnaces (Mt. Vernon and Breakneck), an Ore Mine, Brick Works, Coal and Coke Mines, and a Glass Factory.

IRON FURNACES

MOUNT VERNON FURNACE

     The Mount Vernon Furnace was located in Wooddale along Mounts Creek.  It was built in 1801 by Isaac Meason.  Please see the Mount Vernon Furnace page for more information.

BREAKNECK FURNACE
PHOTO TAKEN EARLY 1880's

     The Breakneck Furnace OR (Findley Furnace) was located in the southern part of the township and was built along Whites Run by Miller, Rogers, and Paul in 1818.  It was blown out in 1837.  Why it was more widely known as the Breakneck Furnace is on account of an accident that happened there.  One of the workers fell from the stack of the Furnace causing great bodily injury.  At the time his remarks were, "That was a regular Breakneck Affair."  In 1885 the Breakneck Reservoir was built below the furnace.  Some of the stones from the furnace were used to build the reservoir dam.  Today the whole site is under water and the reservoir is abandoned.

BREAKNECK RESERVOIR
PHOTO TAKEN FROM A POST CARD DATED 1910

     BRICK WORKS

     The abundance of Fire Clay has made the manufacturing of brick a very profitable business.  A large deposit was found near Moyer Station.  With the construction of Coke Ovens the overwhelming amount of bricks needed was astronomical.  Within the township there were two Brick Works.  The "Southwest Firebrick Works" built in 1871 at Moyer Station by Kilpatrick & Company.  This works had four ovens and had the capacity of making 8,000 bricks per day.

     In Wooddale a clay deposit of excellent quality was discovered (at the upper end of the present day Greenlick Reservoir and the Factory was near the Minick Farm).  John Wesley Kinneer was the founder and owner of the brick plant started in 1880.  There was such a great demand for the bricks which caused more employment at the brick plant.  The brick works had a capacity of 4,000 bricks per day.  The section of land laying to the east and south of the Mudd School was surveyed and laid out into building lots and streets.  Here was being laid out a foundation for a future town.  In 1881 misfortune came in form of a fire that totally destroyed the brick plant and any dreams of a new town. *****

COAL & COKE

     Coal Mining and Coke Manufacturing were BIG industries within the township.  The following mines and coke yards are the ones that have been well documented or known of:

     BLAIR MINE Was located along Route 982 and Franklin Road near the old Franklin School.  The year and owners are not known.

     PATTERSON BANK MINE  (1877-?) Was located in Laurelville somewhere along Jacobs Creek.  The owner was Mr. J. Patterson.

     PAINTER-DIAMOND MINE & COKE
      McCLURE COKE WORKS  (1871-1914)  All was one in the same, but under different ownerships and names throughout the years.  It was located along the B&O Railroad on the boarder of Bullskin and Upper Tyrone Townships.  They had a total of 66 ovens.  Of all the ovens, mine and a patch town, nothing is left but one "Company House". *****

     PENNSVILLE MINE & COKE WORKS  (1871-1914)  A slope opening mine it was located along the Southwest Pennsylvania Railroad and near present day Route 119.  This is the oldest coke ovens and yards in Fayette County.  First owned by A. H. Sherrick.  It embraced 165 acres of land.  71 ovens were built and lighted the summer of 1873.  The Pennsville Ovens were located near the present day Everson Exit off of Route 119.  Today there is only a few remnants of the ovens at the coke yard (Behind Pennsville Professional Center). *****

     GRACE MINE & COKE WORKS  (1875-1927)  Was located along the Southwest Pennsylvania Railroad and ran from Moyer Station to Coalbrook.  This was one of the largest coke yards in Fayette County.  In 1889 it contained 410 coke ovens!  This was also known as the Eldorado Coke Works.  The patch town on the hill above the ovens is completely gone.  Today there is a gun club located there.  Very few coke ovens still exist.  On the Bullskin and Connellsville Township line the patch town of Coalbrook still exist and is located at Route 119 and Bellview Road. *****

GLASS FACTORY

     BRYCE BROTHERS  (1893-1896)  Operated a glass factory with one furnace in Hammondville.  The products consisted of light brown tumblers, stem and tableware decorated by the process of needle etching.  Within two years the demand for their products had outgrown the small factory and it was moved to a larger one on South Depot Street in Mount Pleasant in 1896.  The old factory was located on the sharp corner of Main Street and Pershing Street.  All that you can see from that corner now is a heavily wooded area. *****

*****Photos Coming Soon*****

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"MAKING HISTORY SINCE 1784"

Bullskin Township Historical Society
P.O. Box 724
Mount Pleasant, PA  15666
724-787-0853

Email: bullskin1784@aol.com