With its beginnings in the early 19th century, the iron and steel industry played a key role in transforming both Pennsylvania and the nation. Coatesville, Pennsylvania is central to this important story. It was here, in 1825, that a female entrepreneur named Rebecca Lukens began managing the mill and created a successful iron-making operation on the Brandywine River.
Since that time, Coatesville has been the site of an unbroken chain of innovation and improvement in the making of iron and steel, from the rolling of plate for America's first iron-hulled vessel in 1825, through improvements in the making of armor plate steel that helped America defend itself in war, to innovations in steel technology that provided the framework of many modern skyscrapers including the World Trade Center. The entrepreneurial creativity of the early steel pioneers has continued right up to the present day in Coatesville.
The Lukens National Historic District illustrates the maturation of Pennsylvania's iron and steel industries. Far from the rural furnaces of Hopewell or Joanna, Lukens represents a post industrial revolution business. Look closely, however, and the same elements of management, worker, community, and trust exist here in the same way they did at earlier sites.
Visit Terracina, the Lukens Executive Office Building. See Brandywine Mansion, home to Rebecca Lukens, one of the nation's first female industrial leaders.
They should never be forgotten. The thousands of victims of the 9/11/2001 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center twin towers will be remembered at the National Iron & Steel Heritage Museum’s “Coatesville Remembers September 11th” Commemorative Service, Saturday, September 11.
The service will take place at the site of the Steelworkers’ Memorial, which is marked by one of the ten 50-ton World Trade Center steel tridents recovered by the museum in 2010.
Details of the formal program will announced closer to the event.
Video of the commemoration ceremony will be streamed on SteelMuseum.org