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Research: Sawmill Database

Alpha-Numeric Key: GG-20
Corporate Name: Castleberry & Flewellen Planing Mill Company
Local Name:
Owner Name: Castleberry & Flewellen Planing Mill Company. Castleberry & Flewellen. Castleberry & Lawrence. Costleberry Brothers (or Castleberry Bros). J. J. Flewellen.
Location: Longview: Second and Cotton streets
County: Gregg
Years in Operation: 37 years
Start Year: 1879
End Year: 1915
Decades: 1870-1879,1880-1889,1890-1899,1900-1909,1910-1919
Period of Operation: 1879 to 1915
Town: Longview
Company Town: 2
Peak Town Size: 3591 in 1905
Mill Pond:
Type of Mill: Finished products of yellow pine, red oak, and white oak.
Sawmill Pine Sawmill Hardwood Sawmill Cypress Sawmill
Planer Planer Only Shingle Paper
Plywood Cotton Grist Unknown
Power Source: 1880: 30-horsepower steam engine. 1906: 80-horsepower steam engine
Horse Mule Oxen Water
Water Overshot Water Turbine Diesel Unknown
Pit Steam Steam Circular Steam Band
Gas Electricity Other
Maximum Capacity: 15000: 189320000: 1915
Capacity Comments: 1,000,000 board feet produced during the reporting period of the Census in 1880. In 1893, 15,000 feet daily. 20,000 feet daily in 1915.
Rough Lumber Planed Lumber Crossties Timbers
Lathe Ceiling Unknown Beading
Flooring Paper Plywood Particle Board
Treated Other
Equipment: 1880: three-saw gang and two circular saws. 1905: Sawmill and later a planing mill
Company Tram:
Associated Railroads: Texas & Pacific. Santa Fe. International & Great Northern
Historicial Development: The Costleberry (Castleberry) sawmill was listed in an 1880 Chicago lumberman directory, and the census of 1880 identifies the mill as being in Precinct 1 with Longview as its post office. The records reveal that the mill used a 30-horsepower steam engine to run a three-saw gang and two circular saws. Thirty men worked eleven-hour days for daily wages from $1.35 to $4.00. They were paid a combined total wage of $10,000. During the reporting period, the mill cut 1,100,000 feet of lumber, valued at $18,180, from $15,000 worth of raw materials. The woods crew did its logging in “Eastern Texas.” The mill was reported in the Galveston Weekly News of April 13, 1893, to be cutting 15,000 feet daily. The sawmill firm was known as Castleberry & Lawrence in the 1905 and the 1907 Reference Book of the Lumbermen's Credit Association ratings. The firm absorbed J. J. Flewellen's shingle and lumber company at Longview, and changed the name to Castleberry and Flewellen Planing Mill of Longview. The company also had expanded to Gladewater by 1907. By 1915, a plant was no longer listed at Gladewater in the company name. A map published in 1906 places the mill in Longview ninety-five feet southwest of 2d Street and the International & Great Northern tracks. The plant included a sawmill, a machine shop, and an 80-horsepower steam engine. One of its planing mill customers in 1906, according to Gregg County records, was the sawmill firm of Sanders and Pruitt. In 1915, according to the Directory of American Sawmills, Castleberry & Flewellen had become a planing company only, cutting 20,000 feet daily of pine and oak. According to Webb, the Longview area had settlers before the Texas Revolution. Early a plantation area, its location was considered estimable by officers of the the Texas & Pacific Railroad, who gave it the name of Longview because of “the long-distance view . . . from the village.”
Research Date: MCJ 04-19-96
Prepared By: M. Johnson