A remnant of the once massive, legendary U.S. Steel Homestead Works, the Carrie Blast Furnaces is a vestige of Pittsburgh’s 20th-century domination of the steel industry. This Historical Landmark in Pittsburgh, PA, is open for public tours May through October. In addition to the Industrial History tour, visitors can discover more about the site by going behind the scenes with the Arts & Grounds tour. Rivers of Steel also offers family-friendly festivals, engaging art workshops, and unique programs here throughout the season, in addition to making the space available for private tours and rental events. To plan your visit with us, call (412) 464-4020 or fill out the form below.
Experiences at Carrie
Declared a National Historic Landmark in 2006, Carrie, as it’s affectionately known, entices visitors to marvel at the scale and legacy of its industrial might. Towering 92 feet over the Monongahela River, constructed of 2.5" thick steel plates and lined with refractory brick, the Carrie Blast Furnaces #6 and #7 are rare examples of pre-World War II iron-making technology. Since the collapse of the region's steel industry in the 1970s and 1980s, these are the only nonoperative blast furnaces in the area that remain.
The most popular tour is the two-hour guided Industrial Tour. It highlights the drama of the iron-making process—from the movement of raw material to the tapping of the furnaces producing hot molten iron—while sharing the stories of the site’s technology, its workers and their culture. Former iron and steelworkers lead many of our tours.
While production may have stopped onsite in 1982, the era of Carrie as an artistic muse was beginning. The Arts & Grounds tour goes behind the scenes to share how guerrilla artists, urban explorers—and later curators, installation artists, and even landscape designers—have made creative use of this revered space.
Nature’s reclamation of this post-industrial site is astounding. The Iron Garden Walk is a botanist-led tour of the 35-acre Carrie Blast Furnaces site. Explore the dense variety of ecological growth and learn about Rivers of Steel’s “addition by reduction” approach to working these wild gardens and grounds.
Are you looking for a hands-on experience at Carrie? Through exhibitions, festivals, workshops, tours, and happenings, Rivers of Steel Arts offers programs inspired by Carrie Blast Furnaces’ use in a post-industrial context. We offer workshops at various skill levels in metal arts, photography, and even graffiti style-writing. Find your opportunity to interpret the region’s past, reimagine its future, and explore a sense of place with Rivers of Steel Arts.
Connect with Rivers of Steel
With tours, workshops, festivals, and special programs, the Rivers of Steel: Carrie Blast Furnaces pull inspiration from the region’s industrial past while crafting transformative experiences for the 21st century. Reach out today to plan your visit to this incredibly special place. Call (412) 464-4020 or fill out the form below.