Looking at things from a different angle…
We’re always looking for better ways to help visitors understand how Beckley Furnace worked. Fact is that few of our visitors are intimately familiar with the process of making iron ore into pig iron, and putting all the pieces together can be a little problematical. And, unfortunately, some pieces of the puzzle of just how the entire furnace worked are missing. Sometimes, we’ve found, looking at things from a different angle can help with this.
As it turns out, Dick Paddock and Christian Allyn, two members of the Friends of Beckley Furnace, have recently been experimenting with our version of a drone — actually, a little remote controlled helicopter that can carry a camera — as a way to explain things better.
The photo above is one of their early efforts — this one, about 60 feet in the air, looking down at the casting arch. You can see a portion of the exterior wall of the building in which the furnace was located on the left and right of the stack (and see the remainder of the outline of the casting house outlined in limestone elsewhere on this site.)
We think that viewing things from above suggests a lot of possibilities, such as showing the spatial relationship between the turbine location and the furnace — and even the slag heap — in a single photo. Stay tuned! We’ll have more!!
And thanks to Dick and Chris for making this happen!