The mill on the south bank of Little Conemaugh river was founded in 1852 by Josiah H. Gautier. The plant became part of Cambria Iron Company in 1881, production was focused mainly on barbed wire fence and agricultural steel.
In 1889 massive rains caused the infamous Johnstown Flood. The results of devastating flash floods were tremendous and 2,029 people tragically lost their lives. It took months to restart the plant again.
In 1906 the construction of rolling mills started, including 9 ", 12" and 14 " mill. Cambra Iron Company was bought by Bethlehem Steel Corporation in 1923 and underwent major modernization within next two years.
In early fifties the mill was giving work to over 18,000 people. This trend was not lasting for long unfortunately. The first public pressure to reduce plant´s emissions rose up in seventies, however it was almost unrealistic to meet the five year cleanup plan, the mill was too old and rundown. Bethlehem Steel announced that certain o perations would be shut down.
In 1977 second devastating flood offered to opportunity to close the plant finally, drastic layoffs followed.
Today Johnstown plant operates three former rolling mills (9", 12" and 14") and producing flats, sharp cornered squares, and special sections. New plate rolling mill has been installed in late 2015.
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