Monday April 8, 1929|
Milling operations at Merced Falls plant of the Yosemite Lumber company will be resumed some time next month after more than a year's layoff. The announcement was made this morning by S. S. Crowley, manager, who has been at Merced Falls since stock in the Yosemite Lumber company was taken over by persons also interested in the Sugar Pine Lumber Company of Fresno several months ago. The two companies remain separate legal corporations, however.
Logging operations will start in the woods north and east of Merced Falls by the latter part of this month, Crowley said. Due to the lateness of the season, this year will see a short cut of perhaps 40,000,000 board feet of timber. The Merced Falls mill start operations on a single shift basis.
This will necessitate the employing of approximately 500 men at the mill and another 1000 men in the woods, according to estimates made by local lumber officials. Some Logs to Pinedale
A small proportion of the logs, he added, will be sent to Pinedale near Fresno for milling, via the Yosemite Valley railroad and the Southern Pacific.
Lumber officials here see a possibility of Merced Falls mill being run on its former production basis of 80,000,00 board feet later in the season, or next year, if present plans prove successful. That output would be on a double shift. Old Organization
The Yosemite Lumber company was first organized in 1913. A slump in the lumber market caused a decreased production in 1927, and the mill and logging camps were closed down complete in 1928.
A crew of men is immediately to be sent to Merced Falls to overhaul the mill and get it in order for the season's run, Crowley declared, which will take about three weeks time
May 8, 1929 |
The huge saws of the Merced Falls mill will start buzzing again at 8 o'clock tomorrow morning after being shut down for more than 18 months, in a resumption pf operations which according to local business men will mean a large measure of prosperity for Merced county.
The logging train made its first trip to Incline yesterday and brought down 35 cars of logs from the woods north and east of Merced Falls. Approximately 500 men are now at work in the woods, and an additional 500 will start work at the mill tomorrow.
The mill will operate a single shift at present, with a possibility of increasing production to two shift later in the year. The annual cut on a single shift basis will be about 40,000,000 board feet. Any small excess of timber which is logged will be sent to the Pinedale mill of the Sugar Pine Lumber company for milling, according to an agreement made between the two companies.
The Merced Falls mill shut down completely last year due to a slump in the lumber market, officials say, after a short run in 1927. No work was done either at the mill nor in the woods.
Machinery has be overhauled during the past few weeks in preparation for this season's run. It is estimated that the first lumber will be shipped out over the Yosemite Valley railroad in a week or ten days. The white pine of the Yosemite Lumber company will be shipped to markets all over the country.
May 10, 1929 |
The mill of the Yosemite Lumber company at Merced Falls yesterday started operating one shift at a rate that would cut 200,00 feet of lumber a day on full time.
Though this was the opening day after a shut down of 18 months, the elaborate plant moved smoothly, without a hitch between the forest and the dry-kilns, S. S. Crowley, manager for the company, said. A long train bringing 32 cars loaded with mammoth sugar pine logs to be deposited in a spectacular splash down a 20-foot bank into the pond, introduced a number of visitors to a series of thrills. Some are "Sinkers"
Mill parlance, Crowley, explained, knows a log having a sap ring so heavy that it won't float, as a "sinker," a log sunk at one end only is a "bobber" and one that floats is a "floater."
The latter is poled into position to be caught up by a chain for a lift of about 40 feet along the log slip and stopped for a moment on the deck, between two band saws, one nine and the other 10 feet. Half-way up the slip the log has been stopped and thoroughly washed with pressure water to prevent dulling the saw. Sinkers and bobbers are worked to place on the pond with grappling hooks operated by a crane. Fast Saws
On the deck a crosscut blade may strike out from the side like a living thing and cut in two a five-foot log in less than a minute. Rolled to the band saw, drawing on a 2500 connected horsepower steam plant, the log is immediately reduced to lumber worth $35 to $40 a thousand and more. Mechanical devices directed by less than a half dozen men, including two sawyers, have done all the work so far, beginning with unloading the cars.
The board goes from the saw to an edger, a circular saw for squaring its edge. The strip trimmed off looks like wastage, but is said to be the purist lumber in the log, a valuable bi-product, going into lathes and molding. The board then goes to one of the plant's 18 drying kilns, or to the planer or yard. Dressing the lumber is said to effect a saving on shipments to distant points. High Grade Lumber
Describing the quality of the output the manager said "the present operation is mostly high grade sugar pine." He expects business to greatly facilitated through a contract signed yesterday whereby the sales department of the Sugar Pine Lumber company of Fresno will assist in marketing the product.
The present 10 hour shift will have to be augmented before long and the box factory employing 100 men and making every type of fruit and vegetable box, will start soon, it is believed.
Included in the Merced group at the mill opening were D. K. Stoddard and Mr. and Mrs. A. D. Stevenot.
November 9, 1929 |
The Yosemite Valley Railroad company has carried approximately 50,000,000 feet of logs from the station at Incline to the Yosemite Lumber company mills at Merced Falls during the season that closed today, according to W. L. White, manage of the railroad company. At the present time, he declared there are enough logs at the mill for another month.
A crew of about 125 men is being kept at Incline for the relocation of the lumber company's 25-mile long branch railroad line from the top of the incline to a point west of the Big Tree Grove.
The branch line is to be relocated during the coming months, for the first time in six years, after having exhausted the timber in the vicinity of its present location. It is planned to complete the project in time for the opening of the logging season next spring.
Logs have been cut during the last few months in the section around the big tree grove, shipped via the lumber company's branch line to the station at Incline. From there they are taken to Merced Falls over the Yosemite Valley lines, left at the mill to be cut into lumber.
After the lumber is manufactured, it is stored and later shipped by way of the Yosemite Valley railroad to Merced, thence over other roads to all parts of the United States.
The fact that there will be no more logging activities this year, and that within about a month the mill is expected to close for the season, will not change the schedule of the railroad company, White said today. This is due to the constant shipping throughout the year of the manufactured lumber that is stored at the mill.