Page:A tour through the northern counties of England, and the borders of Scotland - Volume I.djvu/203

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been validated.


ter product there are a number of veins of different thicknesses, from a few inches to seven feet, adapted to different purposes. Some are hard, and calculated to bear the blast of the iron manufacturer; whilst others are better fitted for the cheerful blaze of the domestic fire. Masbrough, which is separated from Rotherham only by the bridge, contains 1658 males, and 1668 females, a great proportion of whom are employed in and about the ironworks. Here are those of Messrs. Walker, where most of the articles made either of cast or wrought iron are manufactured, from the iron-bridge down to the Dutch hoe. Those of smaller and more delicate workmanship in steel are almost exclusively the produce of the neighbouring town of Sheffield. The following account of the processes in casting and turning cannon, cannon-balls, &c. may perhaps interest you:

To prepare the iron-stone for the furnace, it is first baked in the open air in large heaps, in order to dry it, and to deprive it as much as possible of its sulphur and arsenic; which would be prejudicial to the quality of the metal; the coal is also burnt into coke, or charred. These are then thrown mingled together into the furnace, with common limestone to act as a flux, and some of a superior kind of iron ore brought from Cumber-