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Research: Sawmill Database

Alpha-Numeric Key: CS-78
Corporate Name: Jefferson Lumber Company
Local Name:
Owner Name: Jefferson Lumber Company with James Hervey Bemis. Kildare Lumber Company
Location: Atlanta (mills also at Kildare and Jefferson)
County: Cass
Years in Operation: 13 years
Start Year: 1889
End Year: 1901
Decades: 1880-1889,1890-1899,1900-1909
Period of Operation: 1889 to 1901
Town: Atlanta
Company Town: 1
Peak Town Size: Unknown
Mill Pond:
Type of Mill: Lumber
Sawmill Pine Sawmill Hardwood Sawmill Cypress Sawmill
Planer Planer Only Shingle Paper
Plywood Cotton Grist Unknown
Power Source: Steam
Horse Mule Oxen Water
Water Overshot Water Turbine Diesel Unknown
Pit Steam Steam Circular Steam Band
Gas Electricity Other
Maximum Capacity: 40000: 1890
Capacity Comments: Estimated 40,000 feet of lumber daily
Rough Lumber Planed Lumber Crossties Timbers
Lathe Ceiling Unknown Beading
Flooring Paper Plywood Particle Board
Treated Other
Equipment: Sawmill
Company Tram:
Associated Railroads: Texas & Pacific
Historicial Development: The Jefferson Lumber Company was a big player in lumber and logging in Northeast Texas before 1900. W. B. Ward and James Hervey Bemis, both primary owners of Jefferson Lumber, had been selling company acreage as early as 1885, according to county records. The firm had large plants at Jefferson and Linden and created a new plant at Atlanta about 1889. John D. Hanes wrote that the Atlanta plant was south of the Sheets Brothers lumber mill. Atlanta, according to the Handbook of Texas, was established on the Texas and Pacific route about 1872. By 1890 it had a population of 1,794. Marion County Deed Record reveal that Jefferson Lumber Company, with J. H. Bemis as President, bought 1,600 acres in 1889 from R. M. and E. L. Galloway and R. M. Galloway's commissary, oxen, and wagons. W. G. Ragley was superintendent by the next year, after the closing of his own mill in the southwest part of Jefferson. In July, 1892, the company was in financial straits. Its ownership of W. B. Ward, Jno. H. Bemis, W. B. Chew, and Elijah Robinson ordered its Trustees, H. A. O'Neal and E. A. Allday, to sell the company to Kildare Lumber Company, W. B. Ward, President for $171,000. Property included the plants, the Kildare Mill and Mill No 2 and planing mills, at Kildare with the Kildare & Linden ( a locomotive, twenty-four logging cars, a box car, a passenger car, and twelve miles of tracks, with stations at both towns); and the sawmill and planing mill at Atlanta, with the Atlanta & Mt Pleasant (two locomotives). Robinson gave a quit claim on Kildare Lumber Company on July 19, 1892. During the next decade, Jefferson Lumber had financial difficulties. On August 15, 1898, Ed Rand, A. C. Smith, and M. Jacobs conveyed to W. A. Rule the assets of the former Kildare Lumber Company, worth $25,000 of sawmills, planing mills, railroad stock, etc. Rule, as agent of the National Bank of Commerce ,could sell the property if the note was not met. The plants were taken over by Clark & Boice Lumber about 1900.
Research Date: MCJ 04-03-96
Prepared By: M Johnson