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Northrop, E. B.; Chittenden, H. A., Jr. (ed.) / The Wisconsin lumberman, devoted to the lumbering interests of the northwest
(August, 1874)

Alpena Lumber Company. An extensive and prosperous corporation--the company's mill at Alpena, Mich, and yards at Cleveland, Ohio--capacity of the--mill 13,000,000 feet per year--storage capacity of yards at Cleveland 5,000,000 feet--future plans of the company,   pp. 489-490 PDF (759.5 KB)

New era in the lumber trade,   pp. 490-491 PDF (749.6 KB)

Page 490

9  he Wisconain Lumberman.
Manager-S. C. Prentiss, Cleve- i
land.                            i
The superintendent of the mills at
Alpena is Mr. John G. Beekman, who I
has had a long experience in the I
business. Mr. 0. Baker, for four- i
teen years connected with the lumber E
trade, and for five years the foreman I
of the yards of Sheldon & Co., of this X
city, is in the employment of this 1
company as salesman.             I
From the facts herewith presented, 1
our readers will readily conclude that
the Alpena Lumber Company is a
thoroughly substantial corporation,
having everything at its command
for the prosecution of its business,
which must prove a very important
gain to the mercantile interests of
A few weeks since we expressed
the opinion that the lumber trade
was opening new channels to the in-
jury of the older ones-that the rail-
roads in opening up and developing
the timber resources of the state,
have inaugurated a new era in the
lumber business that was not dream-
ed of a few years ago. The mills
located along the F. & P. M. Rail-
road, and contiguous to good timber,
are multiplying rapidly, and the ship-
ment of lumber from these mills has
increased from year to year until it
has now reached a point of consider-
able magnitude. We hold that lum-
ber can be manufactured much
cheaper at these mills than at those
put to the expense of drying logs for
supply. An exchange took excep-
tions to these views, and stated that
it was mere fallacy to suppose that
lumber could be manufactured cheap
er at interior mills than at those loca-
ted on navigable streams. We see
nothing fallacious about our argu-
ment. Let us lo6k at the facts. The
interior mills are in nearly all in-
stances located in the very midst of
good timber, which can be procured
at all seasons of the year and at a
nere nominal cost; while the mills
n the Saginaw Valley and on the
west shore of Lake Michigan are put
to a very large annual expense for
their supply, and are subject to all
the vagaries of the weather for this
supply. One reason for the pros-
perity which attends the interior
nills is, that the buyer and seller are
brought into closer contact, and as
they generally sell by the car-load to
to the consumer, they have none of
the troubles with the commission
men, so much complained of by the
west shore and Saginaw manufactur-
ers. And as to shipments by rail, it
is well known that they are constant-
ly increasing, and will in all proba-
bility continue to increase until the
bulk of the lumber is carried off in
this manner. On this point the same
exchange says:
"The shipments of lumber by rail
have very largely increased during
the last two years in the Saginaw
Valley, whether it was formerly the
almost universal custom to ship by
water. The change is owing to vari-
ous causes which are likely to con-
tinue and even grow more potent.
Rail transportation is lower on ac-
count of competition and the increas-
ed facilities possessed. In all cases
where trans-shipment from vessel to
rail is necessary, the all rail route is
not usually more expensive than the
route partially by water. The man-
agers of railroads leading into the
valley have stated that if they could
have sufficient business in lumber
transportation they could afford to
do it at prices as favorable as ordi-
nary rates by water and rail com-
bined. The excessive amount of
lake tonnage for lumber carrying in
connection with the increased busi-
ness of the railroads in this branch
of business seems to account for the
exceedingly depressed condition of
lake freights this season. Certainly
the low rates are not owing to any
falling off in the amount of lumber
shipments for the season. uplto this
date. "

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