HOW IT GOT ITS NAME: The name refers to an old iron smelter which once stood on the site, which is in the Danielson section of Killingly. In colonial times, the furnace was built to reduce local ore into iron for agricultural equipment and machinery.
HISTORY: The land, at times the location of a grist mill and then a foundry, had several owners until 1909, when it was sold to the town of Killingly. The town sold the land to the state in 1918. More land was added over the years, including the 240-acre Ross Pond tract in 1964. The park is now 367 acres.
GREAT OUTDOORS: Old Furnace Park is used for boating, fishing, and hiking. A three-mile roundtrip hiking trail features a view from cliffs rising 200 feet above the valley overlooking the eastern part of the town into Rhode Island.
ON THE WEB: To see more, go to courant.com/closeup
SOURCES: The Hartford Courant; Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection; Killingly Conservation Commission