Louisa Furnace account books, 1831-1860

Creator: Louisa Furnace (Montgomery Co., Tenn.).
Collection number: 3560
View finding aid.

Abstract: Louisa Furnace was an ironworks, probably in Montgomery County, Tenn., possibly operated in the 1850s by Gilbert Taylor Abernathy (1820-1888) of Pulaski, Tenn. Abernathy was an army officer, school teacher, civil engineer, iron furnance operator, and large land-owner, most of whose land was sold for taxes after the Civil War. Two volumes relating to the operation of the Louisa Furnace. One volume, 132 pp., contains daybook entries for Louisa Furance, 1853-1855, and records of accounts, 1831-1832 and 1848, that may not be related to furnace operations. The other volume, 192 double pages, is a ledger of accounts, 1854-1860, with African-American laborers at Louisa Furnace, with records of shoes, suits, blankets, cloth, flour, tobacco, and other supplies issued to the workers recorded on the left-hand page and records of amounts due employees for extra and Sunday work on the right-hand page. These amounts are labeled “extra iron,” “cutting wood,” and extra loads of coal.

Repository: Southern Historical Collection

Collection Highlights: A ledger records accounts with African American laborers at the ironworks from 1854 to 1860 (See Oversize Volume SV-3560/2).