Lumber Business - Burlington, VT
Chittenden County, VT Biographies

PROBABLY the most important factor in Burlington's prosperity is the lumber industry and other industries so closely allied to it as to be almost a part of it. Situated as Burlington is, on the direct route, both by water and rail, between the almost inexhaustible forests of Canada and the large cities of New England and the Middle States, its natural advantages have been utilized by a number of the largest lumber corporations and firms in the country ; and Burlington has become the fourth city in the Nation in the distribution of lumber and has the largest mills for dressing lumber in the World.

The first cargo of lumber that arrived here for the eastern markets was brought in 1850. From this time on lumber was brought to Burlington in considerable quantities, but it was not until 1856, when Mr. Lawrence Barnes opened a yard here for the purchase and sale of lumber, that the place was recognized as a leading lumber mart. After 1856 the trade rapidly increased and reached mammoth proportions, which it retains today.

At the present time there are five large lumber firms doing business in Burlington. Their aggregate capital is $4,000,000. The amount of lumber handled by these firms exceeds 150,000,000 feet annually, and employment is given to over 1,000 men. The lumber yards cover a large area on the lake front, with miles of excellent dockage.

Another branch of business, and so closely allied to the lumber business as to he almost a part of it, is the manufacture of lumber into finished articles of commerce, such as box making, sash, door and blind manufacturing, which swells the list of employes to 1,400 men, who may be said to derive support directly from the lumber industry.

This concern, one of the foremost in Burlington, owns extensive timber lands in Canada and Michigan, yards and wharfage at the great distributing points of the country, and mills at Saganaw, Mich., Buckingham, P. Q., Canada, and Burlington. The company's facilities, both for the reception and shipment of stock, are extensive. Adjacent to its mills here, it owns twenty five acres of yards with a total capacity of 30,000,000 feet, and a dock frontage on Lake Champlain of 4,000 feet, at which from thirty to thirty five vessels can discharge at one time. The company's planing mills in Burlington allow the dressing of 40,000,000 feet of lumber yearly, and the annual transactions, at the various points at which the company operates, involves the handling of 175,000,000 feet, while the aggregate sales reach $3,500,000. Its employes in Burlington number between 250 and 300. The offices of the company are located at the foot of College Street, Burlington; at 1 Liberty Square, Boston ; at 82 Wall Street, New York, and room to, Scottish Ontario Chambers, opposite Russell House, Ottawa, Ont. The company was organized in 1878. Its officers are : Otis Shepard, Boston, President and General Manager ; H. S. Shepard, Boston, Treasurer ; George H. Morse and Mayor W. A. Crombie, Resident Managers, Burlington. The directory embraces all of the above named gentlemen and James Macbaren, Buckingham, P. Q., and H. B. Shepard, Boston.

This business was started by Lawrence Barnes in 1856. He soon associated with him D. N. Skillings, of Boston, Mass., and Charles and David Whitney, Jr., of Lowell, and the concern was known as Lawrence Barnes & Co., at Burlington, Vt., Montreal, P. Q., and Whitehall, N. Y.; D. N. Skillings & Co., Boston, Mass ; C. & D. Whitney, Jr. & Co., at Albany and Ogdensburg, N. Y., Detroit, Mich., and Lowell, Mass. It was later known at all of the different places as Skillings, Whitney Bros. & Barnes. The present company was organized in 1878. Its officers are : David Whitney, President, Detroit, Mich.; H. L. Tibbetts, Treasurer, Boston, Mass.; D. N. Skillings, Secretary, Boston, Mass.; W. L. Proctor, Manager at Ogdensburg, N. Y.; D. W. Robinson, Manager, Burlington, Vt. The above gentlemen also form the board of directors of the company. They, and a large corps of men associated with them, are live, active business mean, and with their large capital and connections are able to carry and contract large blocks of every description for their domestic and export trade. Their principal office is at 45 Kilby Street, Boston, with yards and large planing mills at Ogdensburg, N. Y., and Burlington. They also ship from their stocks of lumber direct from Canada, Michigan and the South.

The extensive lumber business of J. R. Booth was established in Burlington in 1876 by Lieutenant Governor Woodbury, who has since acted as its manager. Mr. Booth, the proprietor, is one of the pioneer lumbermen of Ottawa, Canada, where he has been engaged in business for about thirty years. He is one of the larger owners of timber limits in the Dominion, owning over 4,000 acres ands his mills at Ottawa are not exceeded in size by any on this Continent. The Burlington establishment is located at the Pioneer Shops, where extensive mills are conducted for dressing lumber and for the manufacturing of boxes, doors, sash, blinds, etc. In addition to handling the pine lumber of Mr. Booth's manufacture, the Burlington concern deals in Quebec spruce and Michigan lumber. A feature of the business is in fitting out builders with every article in wood for house building. The business of this establishment extends to all parts of New England and New York. Offices are maintained at 71 Kilby Street, Boston, and at 8o Wall Street, New York City.

W. & D. G. CRANE.
This firm has been longest in the lumber business of any firm in Burlington today. Their location is at the north end of the lumber district, and the various buildings used by the firm and by industries in which they are interested are called " North Mills." The concern has been in existence for thirty three years. The yards embrace nine acres, and the mills are fitted with the most approved machinery. In addition to the extensive lumber business, Messrs. Crane are manufacturers of all kinds of packing boxes and cloth boards. They handle Canadian pine and spruce, also native spruce and hard woods. W. & D. G. Crane are partners in the Muskegon, Mich., house of W. G. Watson & Co., and operate a planing mill and box factory at that point. They are also partners in the firm of O. Woods & Co., Natick, Mass., wholesale lumber dealers and manufacturers of boxes. Messrs. Crane give employment to about too men in their business here in Burlington.

This firm is an outgrowth of a business started in Albany, N. Y., in 1847, by J, W. Dunham & Co. The mills of the firm were first located in Burlington in 1872, and are situated at the southern end of the lumber district. Here are about seventeen acres of piling ground and 2,000 feet of dockage, The following gentlemen comprise the firm of Bronsons, Weston, Dunham & Co.: Henry F. Bronson and Erskine H. Bronson, Ottawa, Ontario ; Abijah Weston, Painted Post, N. Y.; J. W. Dunham and H, K, Weaver, Burlington. The firm have mills and extensive timber tracts at Ottawa, Ontario, Manistique, Mich, Gouvenear and Olean, N. Y., and, besides handling the lumber produced at their own mills, they purchase largely from other manufacturers. The mills in Burlington are fitted with the most approved machinery for re sawing and dressing, and for manufacturing house finish and specialties. The tubing used in the Hoosac Tunnel electric light plant, ten miles in length, was made at Bronsons, Weston, Dunham & Co.'s mills here. The annual transactions of this firm in Burlington involve the handling of from 30,000,000 to 40,000,000 feet of lumber.

Burlington, Vt.
As a Manufacturing, Business and Commercial Center
With brief sketches of its history, attractions,
leading industries and Institutions.
Published by the Burlington Board of Trade.

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