• Saugus Iron Works Panorama

    Saugus Iron Works

    National Historic Site Massachusetts

Nature & Science

Double Crested Comorant

Saugus River at Saugus Iron Works National Historic Site

Saugus Iron Works National Historic Site preserves the cultural and natural history of the first successfully integrated manufacturing facility for the production of cast and wrought iron in North America.

The historic structures of the Iron Works are nestled along the banks of the Saugus River, an important natural resource for newly-settled families and workers to the area during the 17th century.

The Saugus River and Turning Basin are fundamental features of the historic landscape. The tidally influenced river is a natural resource for the wide variety of plants, animals, and other organisms that depend on the river, riparian woodlands, and surrounding marshes as an important habitat.

Saugus Iron Works National Historic Site has high biodiversity. The site contains over two hundred species of plants, 74 species of birds, 11 species of mammals, 4 species of reptiles and amphibians, and at least 11 species of fish.

Despite the small size of Saugus Iron Works, the river and other resources support numerous and interesting species that can be seen by visitors.

The Turning Basin and Dock Restoration Project
The Turning Basin and Dock Restoration Project
Click here to see the exciting changes that the natural part of the park has undergone recently
A Black-crowned Night Heron in flight
Black- crowned night Heron in flight
Click here to see which non-human visitors we greet every summer!
VIP patch
Check out what volunteers do to support the park and find out how you can get involved.

Did You Know?

Saugus Iron Works NHS - blast furnace, forge , slitting mill, warehouse and dock seen from Saugus River

In 1634 author William Wood described the Saugus River, "These flatts make it unnavigable for shippes, yet at high water great Boates, Loiters, and Pinnaces of 20, and 30 tun, may saile up to the plantation". The Oxford English Dictionary uses Wood's description to help define the word "lighter".