cover of book

Iron and Steel: A Driving Guide to the Birmingham Area Industrial Heritage
by James R. Bennett and Karen R. Utz
University of Alabama Press, 2010
Paper: 978-0-8173-5611-8 | eISBN: 978-0-8173-8398-5
Library of Congress Classification TN704.U52A23 2010
Dewey Decimal Classification 669.109761781


This guidebook of historic iron-production sites is designed to give the reader a factual and illuminating look at the people and events that shaped Birmingham into one of America’s leading steel centers. Iron & Steel is heavily illustrated with both color and historical black-and-white photographs. It can be used while visiting parks or read as a coherent volume before or after a visit.

The book contains chapters devoted to the larger preserved sites open to the public, such as Sloss Furnaces National Historic Landmark and TannehillIronworksHistoricalState Park. It also highlights lesser-known, yet still accessible, sites such as BloctonCokeOvensPark. The work provides easy-to-follow maps for every site as well as driving directions to the more remote locations, giving visitors easy access to all the notable iron and steel sites in Jefferson, Shelby, Tuscaloosa, and Bibb counties. Each chapter also includes a variety of historical information, with accompanying photographs, in order to present the reader with a detailed and comprehensive account of the Birmingham Iron and Steel District.

Featured sites include: Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park; Shelby Ironworks Park; Billy Gould Coke Ovens Park; Brierfield Ironworks Historical State Park; Oxmoor Furnace Site; Irondale Furnace Park; Helena Rolling Mill Site; Red Mountain Park, Iron Ore Mines; Lewisburg Coke Ovens Park; Sloss Furnaces National Historic Landmark; Ruffner Mountain Nature Center; Blocton Coke Ovens Park; and Vulcan Park and Museum.

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