Summary Location: Waterford Marina Hotel, Canada Street
In 1843 the Neptune Ironworks opened at Park Road as a repair yard for the growing fleet of ships of the Malcolmson family. A Quaker family, the Malcolmsons were major industrialists in the area and had established their cotton factory in Portlaw in the 1820s. At the end of 1846 the first steamer built in the Neptune yard was launched, the SS Neptune.
The shipbuilding business continued to develop especially under the management of John Horn from 1849-70 and employing over 1,000 men locally. In total forty steamers were built at the Neptune yard including five trans-Atlantic liners for the Malcolmson London, Le Harve and New York line, the SS Cella (1862), SS Iowa (1863), SS Cordova (1864), SS William Penn, and SS Indiana. From the 1870s however, the concern was in serious decline, especially after the bankruptcy of the Malcolmson brothers and when the last ship to be built in the yard was completed in 1882 the workforce was reduced to thirty-two men.