Redstone coke oven restoration wins grant
October 15, 2009
REDSTONE – The Federal Highway Administration has awarded a $113,100 grant to restore a contiguous section of three historic Redstone coke ovens along Highway 133 to their original appearance, circa 1900.The funds were awarded to the West Elk Loop Scenic and Historic Byway in cooperation with Pitkin County. Highway 133 as it passes by Redstone, south of Carbondale, is part of the byway.The restoration of the ovens is part of a larger project involving interpretative signs and stabilization of the remaining ovens, of which there are many.The Redstone coke ovens site was added to the National Register of Historic Places as a National Historic District in 1990.Coke is the solid residue resulting from roasting coal, and is used as a reducing agent in the smelting of iron and production of steel. The Redstone ovens were built by the Colorado Fuel and Iron Company in 1899 and used to produce coke from nearby Coal Basin from 1900 to 1909. It was them loaded onto rail cars bound for the smelters in CF&I’s steel plant in Pueblo.