Kelly Nail & Iron / WD Kelly & Sons

Image above, the Kelly family, left to right: Nannie, Lindsey Sr, Lindsey Jr; WD and Sarah Austin; Ironton Austin Jr, Mary Francis Kirker, Ironton Austin Kelly Sr. 

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WILLIAM DOLLARHIDE KELLY

Excellent article about W.D. Kelly…click HERE

Obituary in Ironton Register, October 8, 1891:
Another of the old iron men has departed! William D. Kelly died at his home in Ironton last Friday afternoon, the 2nd day of October. . . . About the first of the century, Luke Kelly moved from Russell county, Va., to Ohio. He bought 500 acres of land at what is now known as Union Landing. This tract he divided up among his five sons, Reuben, Joshua, Charles, Joseph and John Kelly, into tracts of 100 acres each running down the river in the order named. Rev. J. M. Kelly was a son of Joshua; the late General Kelly was a son of Charles; Samuel was a son of Reuben; Whitfield was a son of John, and William D., the subject of this sketch, was a son of Joseph. He was born on the farm, next below the well known Gen. Kelly farm, January 13, 1815. (tells of his father selling to Jas. Rodgers and others the tract of land, on which Etna was built in 1832). On the 18th day of September, 1838, Mr. Kelly married Miss Sarah Austin, who lived on the second farm below where he was born . . . Mr. Kelly began his career as an iron man in 1844, when he became a member of the firm of Dempsey, Rodgers & Co., proprietors of Etna Furnace…. In 1880 with is sons, Lindsey and Ironton, he conceived the idea of building the Kelly Nail & Iron works in this city. In 1855, he organized the Exchange Bank. Interment at Kelly cemetery. Laid to rest by the side of a beloved daughter, Mary, who had died many years ago.


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Ironton Austin Kelly

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Ironton Austin Kelly II (in the middle) is the same person wearing the white shirt in the Kelly family picture at the top of the page. And if that’s not cool enough….click HERE to see what the baby in this picture (Ironton Austin Kelly III) went on to do!

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LINDSEY KELLY 
(Pictured with wife, Nannie, and son, Lindsey Jr)

From obituary in Ironton Register, March 19, 1903:
He died at his home on South Sixth street on March 11, death due to pneumonia. He was 61 years of age. He was born in May, 1842, on the Austin farm below Hanging Rock, and came to Ironton with his parents a few years later. He assumed management of Center Furnace in 1863. He married in 1879 to Miss Nannie Honshell, daughter of the late Commodore Wash Honshell of Catlettsburg. One son, Lindsey Kelly, Jr. was born to this union. State Senator in 1877 for four years. Besides the wife and son, he leaves one brother, Ironton A. Kelly, formerly of Ironton, but now of Ashland, Ky. Burial at Woodland Cemetery. 

Obituary for Lindsey Kelly, Jr; Ironton Register, February 4, 1904:
Only son of Mrs. Nannie H. Kelly died Wednesday night at Brunton’s Sanitarium in Cincinnati. He had been ill with rheumatism for several years and spent some time in California, Texas and other western states in hope of obtaining relief. Following his attack, came heart trouble. He was about 20 years of age. Interment at Woodland Cemetery. 


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NANNIE KELLY WRIGHT
ONLY WOMAN IRONMASTER OF OLD FURNACE DAYS DIES 

(December 12, 1946)
Mrs. Wright, who was 90 years old last Sept. 08, died quietly in her room at the Hotel Marting at 8:30 a.m. following a critical illness of several days. With her passing Ironton lost one of its most colorful figures-a woman who was at home in the drawing room with governors and presidents. In furnace offices and furnace casting rooms. With her died a living memory of the old political, torchlight parades of other years of the business opportunities available even in those years when it was generally considered that a woman’s place was in the home…..–entire obit can be read HERE

“With her death today Ironton’s lost a resident who was a link with the “aristocratic” days of other years, a woman whose life was always one of bold adventure. She was the last immediate member of her family but some cousins, including the Davidson family of South Point, survive.”
(Source: http://lawrencecountyohio.com/biographies/nannie-kelly-wright/


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Kelly Nail Mill THEN and NOW

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The above 1904 Sanborn map shows the Kelly Nail Co. at the River and Front Street between Monroe and Chestnut. Below is a photo from October 2014 of the same perspective:

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This is also the site of the new Ironton-Russell Bridge.

Kelly Nail & Iron was sold to Belfont Iron Works in 1924….who was then bought out by Armco (AK Steel). 

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