| Beaumont, situated in forests, was a timber town at birth, and marked this site Steam Mill Square on its original plat. By 1840, Lucien Hopson had a saw pit on a canal to the south, floating in logs and floating out lumber. Hand-powered shingle and sash mills were soon operating. In the 1850s, steam mills were initiated. Pre-1861 mill firms included Phillips, Ross & Alexander, Otto Ruff, and A. J. Ward. After the Civil War (1861-65) brought ruin, the mills helped the city recover. Bremer Lumber, Goldsmith & Reagan, Long & Long, and Pipkin & Haltom were operating by 1870. Beaumont Lumber Company, Olive & Sternenberg, Reliance, and the Smyth Brothers (Eagle Mill) were here by 1877. Later came Adams & Milmo, Globe Planing Mill, Industrial Lumber, Miller Vidor Lumber, Neches Lumber, the Southern Land & Lumber Company, and Texas Tram & Lumber Company. About 1900, tycoon John Henry Kirby bought several of the Beaumont mills. By the 1920s nearby forests were depleted. Log-floating on the Neches gave way to hauling by railroad, and the city mills were phased out in favor of mills in the woods. |
This page last updated: 7/15/2008
Beaumont: Lumber Mill City of the Nineteenth Century Historical Marker Location Map, Texas
Related Themes: Texas C.S.A., Texas Confederate States of America, Confederacy
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