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Tredegar Iron Works, Richmond

4.5
#3 of 15 in Museums in Richmond
The Tredegar Iron Works was a historic iron works in Richmond, the capital of the U.S. state of Virginia. Opened in 1837, by 1860 it was the third-largest iron manufacturer in the United States. During the American Civil War, the works served as the primary iron and artillery production facility of the Confederate States of America. The iron works avoided destruction during the Evacuation Fire of 1865, and continued production through the middle of the 20th century.Today a National Historic Landmark District, the 22-acre site and remaining structures serve as the main visitor center for the Richmond National Battlefield Park of the National Park Service, as well as the location of a private museum, the American Civil War Center at Historic Tredegar.HistoryFounding (1836–1841)In 1836, a group of Richmond businessmen and industrialists led by Francis B. Deane, Jr. set about to capitalize on the growing railroad boom in the United States. The group hired Rhys Davies, then a young engineer, to construct a new facility, brought a number of his fellow iron workers from Tredegar, Wales, to construct the furnaces and rolling mills. The foundry was named in honor of the town of Tredegar, where iron works of the same name were constructed in the early 19th century. The new works opened in 1837, yet the Panic of 1837 and accompanying downturn resulted in hardship for the new company. Davies died in Richmond in September 1838 from stab wounds sustained in a fight with a workman and was buried on Belle Isle in the James River.
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  • Tredegar Iron Works were an important part of Richmond's history. They have part of the originial works there and also a very intersesting Civil War Museum adjacent to the outside display. Outside dis...  more »
  • Explored the original site after going through the Civil War Museum. The original water wheel still works!  more »
  • It’s an amazing experience to walk the grounds at Tredegar and get a sense of the water’s power. Imagine the ironworks at maximum capacity with its rolling mills running full speed. Tredegar is worth ...  more »

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Where to stay in Richmond

Richmond boasts a wide array of accommodations, including inns and national chain hotels. Those who want to take full advantage of the city's rich historical heritage should consider staying in the Northside area, home to a number of historic districts, or near the Boulevard, where you can find most of the city's museums. There are a number of apartment vacation rentals available in residential areas of the city; neighborhoods close to Virginia Commonwealth University are generally a safe bet for those wanting to take advantage of lively eateries, quirky stores, and bars.
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