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Ingram, Orrin Henry, 1830-1918 / Autobiography, Orrin Henry Ingram : May, 1830--December, 1912

Mills--booms--Dells dam,   pp. 49-52 PDF (865.8 KB)

Page 49

kept me away from home about two months. The railroad
had reached Sparta, and from Sparta I came by stage-the
same means of conveyance I had when I started for St. Louis.
The next year we got our logs from the Eau Claire river, brail-
ing them from its mouth to our boom. The next year, 1860,
we got most of our logs from the Chippewa. The logs were
sorted at Chippewa and our logs came on down the river.
   Mr. Randall had conceived the idea of a sheer-boom, which
was hung just below the Little Niagara, on that side of the
river, and with that we sheered the logs to the canal leading
into Half-Moon lake. For a couple of years the most of our
logs from the Ghippewa were sheered in Half-Moon lake, and
to get them back we put in a temporary dam where the canal
left the river, and by means of a jack-ladder, with a small en-
gine, we managed, with spiked rollers in the top of the jack-
ladder, to pull the logs over and dump them into our boom-
The D. Shaw Lumber Company and ourselves built a long pile
pier into the river into which our logs were sheered and guided
into the canal, and then they were sorted into the lake our
logs put into our boom on one side and the D. Shaw Lumber
Co. logs on the other side. Their logs were taken around to
the outlet of the lake at the other end from where the present
mill stands.
   In 1861 or 1862 we planned to build a narrow-gauge rail-
road of forty-pound rails to take the logs back from the lake
and roll them into our pond, in place of driving them back
through the canal. I went to Pittsburg and contracted for a
small locomotive from Porter & Smith, engine builders, build-
ing chiefly small engines for coal mining purposes. After our
engine was built and before it was shipped here we enlarged
the entrance to the canal and extended a long pier into and
up the river, and had a sorting boom inside of that, so we
could drop the logs into our boom through an opening in the

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