Sloss Furnace National Historic Landmark – AL
James Withers Sloss began construction on “City Furnaces” in June, 1881 on fifty acres of land donated by the Elyton Land Company. The first iron was produced there in April of 1882. In 1883, the company earned a bronze medal at the Southern Exposition in Louisville for the “best pig iron.”
Locals were proud that much of the ironworks machinery was of southern manufacture. The Sloss-Sheffield Steel and Iron Company was a leading foundry iron producer until its closure in 1971. The furnaces were donated to the Alabama State Fair system, and in 1981 it was designated as a National Historic Landmark. The site currently serves as an interpretive museum of industry. There is an annual metal arts program hosted by Sloss Furnaces, as well as concerts, workshops, and festivals. Tours of the facility are also offered, and it is recommended that reservations be made two weeks in advance.