The lean-to structure now called the Smithy Annex, served as the blacksmith shop for the Kehoe Iron Works from around 1898 until at least 1916. During that time, the smithy’s workshop was equivalent to a current-day welding shop.
Instead of gas or electric welds the smithy would heat the metal in the furnace, then hammer the metal to mold the pieces together. On the east section of the northern brick wall one can observe pitting caused when hot metal landed on the clay brick.
The reaction was for the moisture to turn to steam in the brick to expand and expel the hot section causing pockmarks on the wall. Most foundries and blacksmith shops of the time had dirt floors since concrete and brick tend to explode when molten metal lands on it.
Wood floors were avoided to prevent structure fires. William Kehoe, while working for James Monahan, was listed at one time as a blacksmith and later as a “moulder.” The “moulder” or molder would place the sand-casts and “pound sand” around the form before casting the molten metal.