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Jackson Ferry Shot Tower
Completed in 1807, the Jackson Ferry Shot Tower is unique for several reasons. The typical shot tower was usually close to 150 feet tall and made out of brick. The Jackson Ferry tower only stands 75 feet above ground and is built out of limestone. The first was accomplished by building on a hill, allowing the builders to dig 75 feet underground to create a "basement." The second enabled the tower to keep a more consistent cool temperature, improving the quality of shot produced by the tower.
Today, the Jackson Ferry Shot Tower stands as one of only three such buildings left in the United States. While none of its products were used in any of the United States' wars, it is a reminder of an industry needed for expansion into the frontier. It is now the center of a state park and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1969.
SourcesNational Register of Historic Places Nomination Form. Virginia Department of Historic Resources. http://www.dhr.virginia.gov/registers/Counties/Wythe/098-0016_Shot_Tower_1969_Final_Nomination.pdf.
Austinville, Virginia 24312
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