Nearly four decades ago, a highway expansion project resulted in the excavation of 35 unmarked graves at Catoctin Furnace, an industrial ironworking village in western Maryland. Initial analysis identified the remains as Africans or African Americans associated with the late 18th- and early 19th-century operation of the ironworks. Renewed efforts to learn more about these poorly documented individuals and connect the site's untold past to present generations through heritage tourism, prompted reanalysis of the skeletons. Updated assessments of demography and pathology, along with new analyses including heavy metals and carbon and nitrogen stable isotopes, elucidate the life histories of these early laborers and their involvement in furnace operations. Some data derived from recent testing differentiate the Catoctin Furnace individuals from their plantation-based contemporaries in the mid-Atlantic, suggesting regional differences in diet and possible occupational exposure to toxins.