Summerlee Iron Works, about 1906

This postcard shows the stoves and furnaces of the Summerlee Iron Works with the Gartsherrie Cut of the Monkland Canal in the foreground.

The big pipe running along the front of the works carried waste gases from the tops of the furnaces. These hot gases were then sent though the stoves to heat up the honeycomb of firebricks inside. The waste gases were then turned off and fresh air was forced through the stove where it was heated before being sent into the blast furnaces.

The railway wagons in the foreground were used to carry away the pig iron that was made in the furnaces. Beyond the furnaces, at a higher level were many more railway sidings for marshalling the raw materials to be fed into the furnaces.

At this point in 1906 the ironworks was entering its decline. Local supplies of raw materials were running low and had to be brought in from further away. The company had just sold a steelworks that it owned and iron production would end in little more than 20 years during which the ironworks was not modernised any further.

Although most of the ironworks structures that you can see in the picture have been excavated the scene today is largely obsured by trees along the bank of the canal.

Museum reference:
Made by:
WR&S Ltd
Place Made:
On display:
In Storage: Museums
Associated with:
Summerlee Iron Co · Summerlee Iron Works, Coatbridge, Scotland
height: 88 mm
width: 139 mm
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