Sat here in Cornwall its very hard to imagine the location of the President Cornish Engine house, many miles away across the other side of the Atlantic. In this blog I will therefore delve into the wonders of the internet to pin down this important reminder of Cornish engineering in the USA. Have a go at armchair mine exploration.
Damian Nance in his article in the International Steam engine Society Bulletin describes the engine’s location as:
“On the south-eastern outskirts of Allentown, Pennsylvania, just over half a kilometer south of interstate 78”
Where is Allentown?
My first stop, was to use google Earth to find Allentown-
Where is the engine house?
Mark Connor describes the engine house’s location as
“The remains of the massive pump which provided water control for the mine consist of the stone walls of the engine house structure and they are located on the south west corner of Old Bethlehem Pike and Center Valley Parkway in Friedensville, Upper Saucon”
Using this information, and some wandering around google maps, I managed to find its location, and here it is on Google earth:
This view looked promising, a large flooded working with some obvious mine waste surrounding it, but no obvious engine house. But, When I clicked on the google earth 3D button, and wandered around...and there it was!
Stood on the edge of the flooded workings, surrounded by trees was the massive walls of the house. I next tried street view, but no how many times I wandered the roads around the location using googles little yellow man, I could not grasp a glimpse of the engine house remains. There is just far too much vegetation obscuring the view.
Now that I have tracked down where the mine is, my next task in this series will be to explore when the engine operated, to link its time line with that of William West. However, after that little journey into the world of Google Earth I am tempted to have a few more hunts around the world for Cornish Engine Houses.
For an exploration of a Victorian Cornish Mining Map download a sample of my Kindle edition of The Liskeard Mining District in 1863.
Prime members can borrow the book for free.