The future site of the expanded National Iron and Steel Heritage Museum in Coatesville is filled with dusty steel shavings and now-quiet motors from a bygone era of steelmaking.
However, on select Saturdays this summer, this part of the mill will come to life again, this time with photographers in hard hats capturing portraits of former Lukens Steel workers.
The project – entitled “I Am Coatesville Steel” – is led by professional photographer Darcie Goldberg and funded by the Stewart Huston Charitable Trust.
Along with a group of talented volunteers, Goldberg will be creating a photographic record of a generation of steel workers through the lens of contemporary artists.
Focusing on the workers who made Lukens Steel successful is purposeful.
“The story of Rebecca Lukens is remarkable and inspirational,” said Jim Ziegler, Executive Director of the NISHM. “The story of Lukens People – and the iron and steel products they have made over the course of two centuries – is equally remarkable, and also inspiring.”
The resulting exhibit will be on view in the fall in Coatesville, then travel to the Chester County Historical Society, and finally be exhibited at People’s Light and Theatre in Malvern in time for the 2019 performance of Sweat.
Anyone who worked for Lukens Steel is invited to have a professional portrait taken in the mill. Portrait sitters will be special guests at the opening reception of the exhibit and given their portrait at the end of the exhibition.
To sign up for a portrait sitting on either June 2 or July 28 between 10 AM and 2 PM, call 610-384-3030 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with the day and time of your preference.
For those unable to come to the mill, photographers are available for home visits.