Hopewell Furnace
National Historic Site

National Park Service

“The people of Hopewell Furnace were not famous,
yet their lives and work were crucial to the development
of our nation’s industry from humble beginnings to
Industrial power. Each of us in our own way continues to
shape that history — the collective story of our nation.”

Hopewell Furnace: A Place of Opportunity

opewell Furnace remains the most thoroughly preserved representation of America’s early iron-making industry and community life. This new video for the visitor center theater uses reenactors, artifacts, animation, and special effects to explore the social history of the iron-making community. Creative techniques were used to give a feature film look to the project, while working within a documentary budget. When a fog machine was rigged to give the effect of smoke coming out of the furnace chimney, park staff came out to look at a sight that hadn’t been seen in nearly 100 years. Our team went the extra mile, rebuilding a damaged collier's hut, and creating a blast furnace animation at no extra charge to the project. Blacksmithing, farming, pattern and mold making, the charcoal process, and various crafts are shown. We are very proud to have produced this project in our native state of Pennsylvania. (The park is located beside French Creek, where insert shots of boat scenes were previously photographed for the Battle of New Orleans video). The project is narrated by David Conrad, a renowned actor and Pittsburgh native actively involved in preserving and telling the story of our nation’s industrial history.

The Argentine Company paid particular attention to details of costuming and props, making certain that each scene fit the designated time period. As an example of the attention to detail, the company found a period wagon and period carriage to rent and located historically accurate Percheron horses to pull the vehicles. Not all breeds of modern draft horses were used in 19th century Pennsylvania and having the right horses adds to the authenticity of the piece. Argentine Productions received rave reviews from the entire park staff, some of whom have extensive experience with film production. Their attention to detail, respect for the resource and dedication to excellence showed through during long grueling days of filming.”

Frances K. Delmar
Chief of Interpretation
Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site

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