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Research: Sawmill Database

Alpha-Numeric Key: AG-24
Corporate Name: Angelina County Lumber Company
Local Name: Keltys
Owner Name: Angelina County Lumber Company, 1888 to 1966: Joseph H. Kurth, Sr.; Eli Wiener, Simon Henderson, Sr. C. S. Keltys and J. A. Ewing: Ca. 1870 to 1888. See Angelina Plywood Company for further history.
Location: Keltys: intersection of Angelina & Neches River RR and Red Town Road
County: Angelina
Years in Operation: 97 years
Start Year: 1870
End Year: 1966
Decades: 1870-1879,1880-1889,1880-1889,1900-1909,1910-1919,1920-1929,1930-1939,1940-1949,1950-1959,1960-1969
Period of Operation: About 1870 to 1966
Town: Keltys, northwest of Lufkin
Company Town: 1
Peak Town Size: 500-600, 1895-1905; 2000, 1928; 800, 1934; 1000, 1950.
Mill Pond:
Type of Mill: Angelina County Lumber was a complete lumber-milling facility, producing all grades of finished and unfinished lumber products.
Sawmill Pine Sawmill Hardwood Sawmill Cypress Sawmill
Planer Planer Only Shingle Paper
Plywood Cotton Grist Unknown
Power Source: Steam-powered machinery, continually upgraded, to run sawmills, planing mills, and dry kilns.
Horse Mule Oxen Water
Water Overshot Water Turbine Diesel Unknown
Pit Steam Steam Circular Steam Band
Gas Electricity Other
Maximum Capacity: 40000: 1893125000: 1928100000: 1940100000: 1966
Capacity Comments: 40,000 feet daily in 1893. 125,000 each on sawmill and planing mill in 1928. 100,000 feet daily in 1940. Thirty million board feet/year in 1955. 100,000 feet daily in 1966.
Rough Lumber Planed Lumber Crossties Timbers
Lathe Ceiling Unknown Beading
Flooring Paper Plywood Particle Board
Treated Other
Equipment: 1870 to 1906: circular sawmill. 1928: Band and circular sawmill, planing mill, edgers, trimmers, dry kilns, electric light plant. Renovations made through the years.
Company Tram:
Associated Railroads: St Louis Southwestern (Cotton Belt)
Historicial Development: Charles S. Keltys and James A. Ewing built the original mill and tram road at Keltys, which Joseph H. Kurth bought in March, 1888, for $7,303.50. Located on the Cotton Belt railway, the mill initially employed about 120 men and supported a community of 500. Needing capital, Kurth took as partners Eli Wiener and Simon Henderson about 1890. Angelina County Lumber was incorporated in September 1890, and added a planing mill that year. By 1893, the daily capacity was 40,000 feet. A fire devastated the mill in 1906. It was rebuilt with a single band and a Dixie circular saw. Wiener, Kurth, and Henderson expanded their lumber interests severally and jointly throughout East Texas and Louisiana. San Augustine County Lumber Company was organized in 1915 by them in order to harvest a tract of land bought from Kirby Lumber Company. The owners attempted to make the former business the wholesale company by selling the industrial plant to San Augustine County Lumber Company for $150,000 in 1916 its plant in Keltys and using the latter as the sales agent. Later federal income tax troubles led to a chartered name change back to Angelina County Lumber Company. The mill was rebuilt in 1939, after another fire, as a double band mill with a capacity of 10,000 board feet per hour. A small hardwood mill was added by 1948, designed to cut ties for the A&NR railroad, the company tap-line. The hardwood mill could cut 15,000 feet daily. The facility was employing more than 250 workers when the sawmill first then the planing mill closed between December 1965 and March 1966. The facility and 168,000 acres were sold to Owens-Illinois in March 1966.
Research Date: JKG 9-7-93, MCJ 12-04-95
Prepared By: J. Gerland, M. Johnson