SECNAV visits Sparrow Point Shipyard

on May 6, 2021 Behind the Scenes, Bethlehem Steel Legacy Project, Industrial Heritage, Stories and Tags: , , , , , , , with 0 comments
A black and white photo from 1982 shows a woman meeting with two shipyard workers on an exterior staircase Congresswoman Beverly Byron engages in conversation with shipyard workers.

by Ken Jones In the early 1980s the U.S. shipbuilding industry was in a slump. Construction of new merchant ships was steadily declining. According to the American Council on Shipbuilding, in 1975 the industry produced 75 commercial ships, in 1979 it produced 22, and by 1985 it produced only five—a staggering 75% decrease in production […]

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“The Millwright’s Poison Pillow”

on April 21, 2021 Bethlehem Steel Legacy Project, Industrial Heritage, Stories and Tags: , , , , with 0 comments
A black and white photograph shows a young woman sitting on a bar counter next to a young man in a suit. Mildred and Mario Clementoni on their honeymoon. Photo courtesy of Donna Clementoni.

By Donna Clementoni Editor’s Note: Donna Clementoni composed this poem about her father-in-law, Mario Clementoni, Sr. Known as “Motts” in his family, he began working at Bethlehem Steel after World War II and spent his entire career at Sparrows Point. He will turn 95 in June 2021. Near the end of the Patapsco River, around […]

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Upcycling at the Shipyards

on April 14, 2021 Bethlehem Steel Legacy Project, Industrial Heritage, Stories, Uncategorized and Tags: , , , , , , with 0 comments
A vintage photo shows a large container ship with the Key Bridge in the background Maersk Emma arrives at Sparrows Point to begin the conversion process.

By Ken Jones Decades before “upcycling” was in our vernacular, the Bethlehem Steel shipyards were putting it into practice on a grand scale. Beginning in the Baltimore yards in the 1950s, Bethlehem began to offer a conversion service. Conversion extended the life of an outdated vessel by making it larger or changing its purpose. Commercial […]

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Views of Sparrows Point: Andrew Morton

on February 25, 2021 Bethlehem Steel Legacy Project, Stories and Tags: , , , , , , with 0 comments
An aerial view of a computer-generated rendering of the Sparrows Point mill A VR rendering of the Sparrows Point mill by Andrew Morton

Andrew Morton began working at Sparrows Point in 1970 in the labor gang. A self-described “little skinny kid” who debated quitting after his first few days on the job, he spent more than 40 years at Bethlehem Steel. Morton worked in the blast furnace, the coke ovens and the 68 Hot Strip Mill. At the […]

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Views of Sparrows Point: Gordon Davis

on February 16, 2021 Bethlehem Steel Legacy Project, Oral history, Stories and Tags: , , , , , , with 0 comments
A color photograph shows a man seated on the roof of a large industrial building wearing work clothes. Gordon Davis on top of deck of #11 battery in a photo taken by his friend, “Wild Bill.” He’s wearing clothing designed to keep heat off: insulated socks, thermal long underwear, blue jeans, flannel shirt, hooded sweat jacket, yellow canvas pants and jacket, steel toe boots with one-inch wood clogs, hard hat, face shield, glasses, respirator, and mittens/gloves.

Gordon Davis worked in many different positions during his almost 40 years at Sparrows Point. He began his career in the coke ovens two weeks out of high school, in 1974. A Baltimore native and second-generation steelworker, Davis shared these photographs ranging from the 1950s (taken by his father) through the late 1980s. Click on […]

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Women of Steel: Sandy Adams Doyle

on February 2, 2021 Oral history, Stories, Women of Steel and Tags: , , , , , with 0 comments
Left: Sandy, in the middle, being crowned Miss Sparrows Point High School in 1972. Right: a recent headshot. Courtesy of Sandy Adams Doyle.

“Women of Steel,” an outdoor exhibition currently on display at the Baltimore Museum of Industry, examines the experiences of women who worked at Sparrows Point. This blog series hopes to highlight more voices of women steelworkers. Today, we hear from Sandy Adams Doyle as she recalls her days as a millwright’s helper at Sparrows Point. […]

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Views of Sparrows Point: Early Steelmaking

on December 21, 2020 Bethlehem Steel, Bethlehem Steel Legacy Project, Industrial Heritage, Stories and Tags: , , , , with 0 comments
A sepia tone photograph shows a few industrial buildings surrounded by fields A ‘General View’ of the Sparrows Point mill in 1892

Bob Crandell—whose management career at Beth Steel and its successors at Sparrows Point spanned 40+ years—recently lent the BMI a spectacular 1892 photo album. These photographs show steelmaking operations at Sparrows Point just five years after the land was acquired by the Pennsylvania Steel Company and only one year after the first steel was made […]

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A Place of Honor in a Legacy Garden

on December 16, 2020 Bethlehem Steel, Bethlehem Steel Legacy Project, Stories and Tags: , , , , , , with 0 comments
This photo shows a row of bricks and a commemorative plaque that reads, "Bethlehem Steel Legacy Garden" Part of the Bethlehem Steel Legacy Garden, near the iconic WWII-era Whirley Crane on the BMI’s campus.

By Claire Mullins Like many men of his generation, Wendell Wesley Doyle proudly joined the military upon graduating from Sparrows Point High School in Dundalk, Maryland, and became a Navy turret gunner on the USS Saratoga during World War II.    When the war ended, he returned to Dundalk, married his sweetheart, and started a […]

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Women of Steel: Rita Hamlet

on December 1, 2020 Bethlehem Steel, Bethlehem Steel Legacy Project, Industrial Heritage, Oral history, Stories, Women of Steel and Tags: , , , , , with 0 comments
A woman with dyed red hair speaks and gestures with her hands. Rita Hamlet pictured in April 2019, courtesy of Bill Barry

Rita Hamlet began working on the ore dock at Bethlehem Steel shortly after the steel industry’s consent decree of 1974 opened more pathways to employment for women and African American workers. At Bethlehem Steel, Rita worked in many different places all while raising her five children. She sat down for an interview with labor historian […]

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Women of Steel: Kathy Garrison

on November 24, 2020 Exhibits, Industrial Heritage, Oral history, Stories, Women of Steel and Tags: , , , , , with 0 comments
A black and white photo shows five women meeting to discuss union issues. Meeting of the Women of Steel, 2005. Left to right: Kathy Garrison, Deb Watnoski, Sharon Pritchard, Kathy Hamilton, Gail Fleming. Courtesy of Kathy Garrison.

Interview by Deb Weiner Kathy Garrison started working at Bethlehem Steel in 1976, not long after a consent decree required the company to stop discriminating against women and minorities. She chaired the Women of Steel group from 2004 to 2012, when the plant shut down. Here are edited excerpts from her recent interview with BSLP […]

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