As a historical property the furnace may not be demolished, materially altered, remodeled, or removed until 180 days written notice to the Gaston County Joint Historic Properties Commisssion. However, ordinary maintenance or repair not involving a change in design or material, or outer appearance is permitted.A November 1993 letter from the Gaston County Historic Preservation Commission in Gastonia, NC, states in part, “You will remember that part of the designation ordinance provides for maintenance and needed renovation. Some renovations require a Certificate of Appropriateness. To help you with this procedure, we are enclosing a copy of our guidelines and an application form that we hope you will keep for future reference. You will notice that our mission states that we want the property to perform an efficient contemporary use while it retains its character and ability to teach the history of our area. We can put you in touch with the N.C. Department of Archives and History Restoration Branch for help and suggestions.”
The Ormand Furnace constructed prior to 1788 was used in manufacturing iron articles. It was designated as historic property by the Gaston County Board of Commissioners in 1987 per North Carolina general statutes. Over the years vegetation has been removed and the loose stones continue to fall away. The shaded and somewhat tree sheltered left side is still largely intact.
This is a cast iron fireplace backing cast in the Washington Furnace (Ormand Furnace). Fireplace backings were placed in the back of a fireplace to reflect the heat outward as well as absorb heat and give it off later as the fire cooled down.This backing is thought to be from the Bert Ormand house (Robert Dixon Ormand II). The house was burned in the 1970's as an exercise for the fire department. After the house was burned, the chimney was pulled down by a cable and the fireplace backing was pulled out. The backing bears the date 1788, but the story is that it was cast about 1815.