North Western Steel & Wire Company

I worked at North Western Steel & Wire Company for 30 years, taking a medical retirement in 2001 2 weeks before they went bankrupt. This mini mill had the largest electric furnaces in the world. They made things like wire, barbed wire, nails, fencing, steel rods, I-beams, channel, angles, & flats. This mill was in Sterling IL and a factory in Rockfalls Illinois, then later built a factory in Kentucky and they bought a steel mill in Texas. They went bankrupt in 2001 and the workers lost their retirements and insurance. Parts of it, the core electric furnace dept and other parts are now owned by Sterling Steel. Some of the mills are still for sale and some are being torn down.

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North Western Steel & Wire Mill Crane

This is footage of the 24″ mill and shipping dept. It has since closed. This was the old way of making I-beams. The video is filmed from an overhead crane loading a truck. It was sped up a little to shorten the film for youtube.


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About Dave Tackett

Dave Tackett is from Sterling Illinois. An avid fisherman since childhood, he has fished all over the Midwest, mainly the Mississippi River pools 8-19. His home waters are pools 13 & 14. After fishing Bass tournaments for many years, he gave it up to fish for Walleye year round. He now guides and fishes for fun. He likes to take photos of the scenic places he visits on the river and likes to keep a video camera running to get footage for his Walleye DVDs. Photography is now where he most of his time working, using professional DSLR cameras and lens. These photos include landscape around the Mississippi River and the Rock River, river birds like eagles heron, egrets etc.
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