A hundred years before the CCC built its facilities at Cooper's Rock, the area had been a beehive of industrial activity. The Henry Clay Furnace, now the sole visible remnant of a oncethriving enterprise, was formerly the nucleus of a settlement of 200 workers. It now stands isolated in a deep, woodsy hollow at the end of a long, gently descending footpath.
The furnace, a truncated pyramid, occupies a 30-foot-square footprint, and its walls rise the same height. A testament to the stonemason's skill, it is constructed of huge sandstone blocks, beautifully finished and joined. Wooden-rail trams connected ore pits, where the iron ore was found, to the furnace. The operation is thought to have lasted until c. 1868.