Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster
Davis Motor Sales banner ad
Impressions pre-reset: 420826 Clicks pre-reset: 872

Possible New Life for Muhlenberg Old Airdrie Furnace

 

airdrie1 400

MUHLENBERG COUNTY, Ky. (4/19/13) – Every day, hundreds of TVA employees, local residents and local hunters travel past what may be one of Kentucky’s most unique, yet largely neglected, historical sites.

Recently, several friends on Facebook began comparing notes for lore, and pictures of the large four or five story 1850s furnace, built by a man that would become Scottish nobility, and a founding father of what is now a booming Kentucky horse industry.
 
Earlier this month, several Airdrie preservationists hiked the sometimes hazardous trail to the furnace, which sits within yards of the Green River. This trip was different though. This time Rachel Kennedy, the Executive Director of Preservation Kentucky ( www.preservationkentucy.org ) also trekked to the site.
 
Kennedy stressed to SurfKY News that this is only a very small first step. A number of factors will have to come together if some way is to found to bring new life to Old Airdrie. Kennedy emphasized that although her initial inspection of Airdrie was just that, she did note that she was impressed with its relatively good condition, considering its exposure to the elements for over 160 years.
 
"It's obviously an amazing example of iron ore production in Kentucky, especially in the western part of the state. It's a really amazing building, and Robert Alexander is a very important figure in the history of 19th century Kentucky." Kennedy noted.

airdrie2 500

Kennedy was highly impressed that the furnace structure, which stands almost 5 stories tall, "is as intact as it is." She noted there are other historic furnaces throughout Kentucky. But Airdrie, she said, seems to have a "unique design. Also, many furnaces are missing bits and pieces. This one is different because it's actually two separate structures, as opposed to one."
 
Kennedy continued, "It's an amazing example of iron ore production in Kentucky, especially for the western part of the state. It's an amazing building, connected to Robert Alexander, a very important 19th century Kentuckian."

Airdrie was the dream of a Scotsman named R.S.C.A. Alexander. Built in the 1850s, Alexander came from his homeland with some of the finest Scottish masons. Although the 5 story solid rock furnace did not fulfill its dream of producing quality iron ore, Alexander did fulfill another dream of success in the world of horses. He moved east to Kentucky's horse country, and went on to become one of Kentucky's foremost horsemen.
 
As for local support, John Rogers and his brother Steve, recall going to Airdrie as small children. "It's a part of some of the 1800s history of this county," Steve Rogers said. Although he no longer lives in the county, he said he would love to be a part of helping the preservation happen.

Another Airdrie supporter, Walt Merriweather, who has lived in both Muhlenberg and Todd Counties over the years, said he also wants to see the site preserved.
 
Freddy Mohon of Beechmont started the ball rolling after seeing some Facebook comments of people who, like him, wanted to try to save Old Airdrie.

John Rogers noted "We just want to see this site preserved. We are hoping there is a way to work with the state or anyone who wants to help. Alexander created the horse industry, but that part of the story never came out. That's the real story.... the entire life of Alexander, including Airdrie and beyond. His life is so fascinating, and this is part of it. Currently two families own the land. There is a lot of area, and we'd like to eventually see more than just a future road going in. We hope there can be a facility that could be utilized. It could be much more than just the furnace site. But if you don't have somebody interested in taking over, to maintain and save it, then we are really running out of time." Rogers emphasized.

Editor’s Note: Please note that at the present time the property mentioned in this article is private, and permission to enter said property is required. Due to disrepair there are many hazards and dangers involved in reaching this site. At this time, it is officially illegal to trespass on this land mentioned without written permission from the property owners.
 
Paul McRee
SurfKY News
Photo provided by Paul McRee

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Posted on 2/2/14
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
button coupons
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
button classifieds
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013

Most Read This Week

November 21, 2014 5610

Man Accused of Assaulting Coach During Basketball…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
November 18, 2014 5185

Couple Charged for Concealing Food in Infant Car…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
November 17, 2014 4656

Police Charge Woman for Drug Possession After…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
November 17, 2014 3944

Bremen Woman Ejected From Vehicle During Kentucky…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Trooper S.C. Recke
November 19, 2014 3557

Two Killed When Vehicle Becomes Airborne, Strikes…

in Local (Owensboro) Top News by Daviess County Sheriff's Office
November 21, 2014 3385

Crashing Dump Trucks in Work Zone Cause Pennyrile…

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Trooper Stu Recke
November 18, 2014 3296

Area Talent to Film Music Video at Merle Travis…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
November 19, 2014 3214

Is Bankruptcy Your Best Option?

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
November 19, 2014 3081

Three Injured in Two-Vehicle Collision on South…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Gwen Smith
November 22, 2014 3072

One Injured in Two Vehicle Collion in Greenville

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Miria Thomas

Stories Trending Today

November 22, 2014 3072

One Injured in Two Vehicle Collion in Greenville

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Miria Thomas
November 21, 2014 1685

KSP Announces 'Cram the Cruiser' to Feed the…

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Stu Recke
November 22, 2014 1653

Greenville Representatives Taking Part in Austin,…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
November 22, 2014 1583

SAR Planning 'Triple' Revolutionary War Patriot…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Geoff Baggett
November 21, 2014 1578

Kentucky Employers to Save About $112 million

in General News For All Sites by Cathy Lindsey
November 22, 2014 1505

Pennyrile Dulcimer Players Demonstrate Unique…

in Top News For All Sites by Ron Sanders
November 22, 2014 1481

Prevent Fires at Home This Winter

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
November 22, 2014 1479

Carve a Turkey Like a Pro

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
November 22, 2014 1408

Happenings and Meetings - Hopkins County

in Hopkins News by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
November 22, 2014 1353

P'Pool Among Top Performing Child Support…

in Hopkins News by Cabinet for Health and Family Services

SurfKY News Group, Inc.
Corporate Office & Studio
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431
270.452.2727 (phone)
  •  270.452.2249 (fax)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social fbsocial twsocial yt
social gpsocial flrsocial rss