Hope Furnace

The OES visited Hope Furnace on April 6, 2002. We had previously visited the furnace on March 30, 2002, to record for electronic voice phenomenon, but took no photographs at the time. We took plenty of photos on April’s return trip and have since returned several more times. Hope Furnace was founded in 1854 by Colonel Putnam and some others. Hope Furnace may have originally been called Big Sand Furnace since there were two large stones in front of the furnace that read, “BIG SAND FURNACE BUILT BY WH WILSON.” The furnace remained in operation until 1875, producing some of the finest iron in the world in its day. Fueled by coal from nearby Moonville, Hope Furnace also manufactured various pieces of weaponry during the Civil War. On its best day, the furnace could produce up to fifteen tons of cast iron and operated 24 hours a day. But shortly after the Civil War came to an end, so did Hope Furnace.

But some say that one worker has never left his post. Enter the legend of Hope Furnace. During the furnace’s operating days, watchmen were employed to oversee the furnace at night to tend the fires since the furnace was a 24-hour operation. The watchmen used lanterns to guide them along their rounds, which sometimes took them to the top of the furnace. One stormy night, a bright bolt of lightning temporarily blinded one of the watchmen as he was walking along the top of the furnace. Not being able to see where he was walking, the watchman fell into the furnace. The bubbling ore quickly melted his body away. It is said that on stormy nights, a dark figure carrying a lantern can be seen walking around the top of the furnace until lightning strikes close by, at which time the figure disappears. We did pick up some strange audio on our EVP recording during our night visit to Hope Furnace. We also recorded higher than usual electromagnetic fields in the area around the furnace.

Location Information: Public Park

Hope Furnace is located in Lake Hope State Park on State Route 278 near Zaleski; Vinton County.



EVP Recordings

Whoosh: The sound of a strong wind blows across the mic, but there was no wind at the time of the recording.
I Am Right Here (x2), No!: This faint whisper was picked up while conducting an EMF sweep. It is hard to hear.
Get Out: A voice whispers, “Get out,” as we were leaving. Others report hearing, “I drunk nothing,” or “I want nothing.”
Go Down The Steps (x2): We recorded this very faint whisper as we were going down the steps.
Cold: An OES member said he was starting to get cold chills and a ghostly voice whispers, “Cold.”