Joanna Furnace was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980. Text, below, was adapted from a copy of the original nomination document.
From the end of the 18th century and completely through the 19th century, Joanna Furnace Complex was a community of its own with not only the Furnace itself, but with store/office, charcoal house, blower/engine house, 15 tenant houses, barns, stables, blacksmith shop, carriage shop, and the ironmaster's mansion. By the 1870s nearly 6,000 acres of land was connected with the furnace lying together in a great, irregular tract in Robeson, Caernarvon, and Brecknock Townships.
Joanna Furnace was started in 1792 by Samuel Potts, whose wife's name it bears, and Thomas Rutter, grandson of the builder of Pennsylvania's first iron works, Rutter's Forge, and its first furnace, Colebrookdale Iron Works in Berks County. First operated under the name S. Potts and Co., Joanna's subsequent companies were known as Thomas Bull & Co.; Thomas B. Smith & Co.; Darling & Smith Co.; and Levi B. Smith & Sons.