Originally published in 1989 this study examines some new facets in the development of the iron industry in the USA between 1839 and 1921 through the study of an individaul form, namely the Thoms Iron Company, one of the leading merchant furnace companies. It charts the end of the anthracite iron age and the changes which brought about the advent of open-hearth steel and integrated steel works. The book discusses the problems the managers of the firm faced with the appearance of industrial innovations which tended to undermine their firm's very existence and provided a new set of optimal conditions necessary for the survival of the firm. It provides a clear understanding of the destructive forces of industrial innovation and the place of creative entrepreneurship in the survival of the firm.
Robert A. Battis
1. Introduction 2. Origins of the Anthracite Pig Iron Industry 3. Early Manufacture of Iron in the Lehigh Valley, 1800-1840 4. Anthracite Iron Production in the Lehigh Valley, 1840-1854 5. Initiation and Organization of the Thomas Iron Company 6. The Age of Anthracite Pig iron, 1855-1875 7. The Thomas Iron Company, 1856-1875 8. Iron to Steel, 1875 - 1919 9. The Growth of Competition, 1876-1893 10. Old Paths 11. The Last Years