Thaddeus Stevens’ Ruined Iron Works at Caledonia State Park

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The ruins of Thaddeus Stevens’ Caledonia Furnace, west of Gettysburg, Pa. (Photo by Michael E. Grass)

FAYETTEVILLE, Pa. — Thaddeus Stevens, the outspoken anti-slavery congressman from Pennsylvania, isn’t necessarily that well known today among Civil War-era political figures. Tommy Lee Jones recently gave Stevens a boost in name recognition with his fantastic portrayal of the “Great Commoner” in “Lincoln.”

But Southerners absolutely loathed Stevens, who was never shy to mince words about any subject, especially slavery and the Confederacy. Stevens was so hated by the South that during the 1863 invasion of southern Pennsylvania, Confederate Gen. Jubal Early came up to this spot on the mountain west of Gettysburg to destroy the ironworks Stevens owned.

There’s not much left to see of the Caledonia Furnace, which is surrounded today by Caledonia State Park.

When I get some downtime in Pittsburgh, I’ll write some more about Stevens, an man worth greater discussion.

Onward to Breezewood!

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The entrance to Caledonia State Park, right off the Lincoln Highway. (Photo by Michael E. Grass)

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