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Pennsylvania Engineering Works/PECor - New Castle PA

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In November 1899 the Pennsylvania Engineering Works formally came into being when industrialist James Reis purchased the defunct James P. Witherow Works, which made boilers and other heavy equipment for the steel-making industry. The plant was immediately enlarged and continued to make heavy castings for use in steel plants. The company merged with the Mead-Penn Iron Works of Meadville in October 1931 and was rebranded as the Pennsylvania Engineering Corporation or PECor. (c1905) Full Size

PECor went into decline like much of the steel industry in the 1970’s. The company eventually went bankrupt in 1994 and was sold. Robert Gall of Pittsburgh purchased the PECor “name” and patents and Charles “Chip” Barletto Jr. of New Castle purchased the buildings and the 12-acre property. Barletto set up an industrial museum and a scrap metal business at the location. He later sold the property to Ferrotech Corp., which ran a heavy-duty metal recycling plant at the location. Ferrotech declared bankruptcy in May 2012 and the plant’s future sat in doubt. In December 2012 the New York-based Upstate Shredding, a scrap metal processor, purchased the property and buildings at auction for $2.2 million. The company began demolishing the old buildings in early 2013 in preparation of erecting a new facility at the location. Pictured above are the extensive boiler (on left) and machine shops (on right). (c1900) Full Size

A letter from Charles L. Baldwin, the Treasurer of the Pennsylvania Engineering Works, acknowledging receipt of payment for a stock purchase. The letterhead indicates the following company officers: President E. W. Beadel, Vice President and Chief Engineer J. K. Furst, Treasurer Charles L. Baldwin, and Superintendent W. H. Shipler. (1925) Full Size

The old Pennsylvania Engineering Works on Moravia Street. (c1902) Full Size

An advertisement for PECor that appeared in the New Castle News of February 21, 1976. Full Size

An overhead view of the aging Pennsylvania Engineering Works along Moravia Street on the south side. (c2010) Full Size

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Demolition of the aging PECor facilities got underway in early 2013. (May 2013) Full Size

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By June 2013 another landmark building(s) – the old Pennsylvania Engineering Works – was completely demolished and cleared away. Construction of a new scrap metal processing plant is scheduled to begin soon. (Jul 2013) Full Size

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Construction of the $26 million Ben Weitsman of New Castle, a division of New York-based Upstate Shredding, began at the site in the fall of 2015. The state-of-the-art facility opened for business with about thirty employees in May 2016. It is reportedly the largest privately-owned scrap metal processor in the eastern United States. (Dec 2016) Full Size



  1. My Grandfather, Elon A Horchler, retired from here in the early 1960’s. He was a shop foreman.

    Don Latimer · 12/14/2012 09:34 AM · #

  2. I think they are in the process of tearing this building down. Not exactly sure though.

    Jessica Kirkwood · 06/18/2013 01:21 AM · #

  3. I just drove down Moravia earlier today and is in fact demolished.

    Bill Cwynar · 06/20/2013 03:21 PM · #

  4. (EDITOR’S NOTE) The aging facility was recently purchased by Upstate Shredding/Weitsman Recycling of Owego NY. They plan on clearing the property and then erecting about 4-5 buildings as part of a scrap metal recycling plant. Jeff

    Jeff Bales Jr · 06/20/2013 04:07 PM · #

  5. I sold and designed the 1976 New Castle News ad (see above). It was for our Progress Edition. That ad put me over my quota and I received a whopping $9.00 bonus for it.

    Jack Gill · 12/07/2014 10:41 PM · #

  6. My father worked there 1970’s.

    Gwendolyn Buchanan · 12/11/2016 05:15 PM · #

  7. My grandfather, Paul Campbell, was one of the supervisors there, he retired in the 1970’s. He used to take me there on Saturday mornings when they finished a project to let me see it. I remember being amazed seeing wheels where the axel was higher than I was tall.

    Chris Philips · 03/05/2019 04:41 PM · #