Quiverheart Gorge Cultural History
Site of historic Steam Furnace. Quiverheart Gorge is located on the site of a historic furnace that was built in 1815 for the purpose of manufacturing iron from nearby iron ore fields. Unlike earlier furnaces that were propelled by water, this furnace was propelled by steam engine, and is the first steam engine to operate west of the Alleghenies.
This and the other iron manufacturing furnaces built in the Brush Creek region employed hundreds of men during the period in which they operated. Although it was believed the Brush Creek furnaces produced some of the best quality iron from the ore harvested from the area’s limestone-capped hills, the furnaces were abandoned around the 1830s when iron, limestone and timber resources diminished and the operations were outcompeted by the larger fields in Hanging Rock and Youngstown fields in Ohio and the Pittsburg fields in Pennsylvania.
While the iron furnace era on Steam Furnace Road emerged and died before the advent of photography and thus no pictures exist of its historic operations, piles of charcoal used to fuel the furnace and handmade bricks from the brick foundry can still be seen on-site. See photo at right.
Photo of Kim Baker with a brick found in Bundle Run that dates back to when the historic brick foundry was manufacturing brick from local clay in the early 1800s.
A Tribute to Matthew Baker. When David Baker’s son, Matthew, was alive, he loved horses, and because of his passion, the farm was slowly developed with fenced pastures, stables, and even a large indoor riding arena. When deciding on the name for the farm, Matthew said that riding horses made his heart quiver, and thus it became known as Quiverheart Farm.
Tragically, Matthew died in a car accident on his way to school on the second day of his junior year, less than one mile from the farm. Bereft of his son, David’s heart turned to service. He and his soulmate, Kim, are actively keeping Matthew’s memory alive by serving as leaders and advisors for the Adams County 4-H program, teaching horseback riding lessons to kids in the local commuinty.
David and Kim are devoted to helping to make Quiverheart a lasting legacy for the enjoyment of the local community and visitors coming from farther away. David and Kim envision that someday Quiverheart Preserve will be a place where thousands of people will have an opportunity to find peace, tranquility, and connection.
Matthew Baker with his horse, Alen, in 2002.