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The San Francisco call. (San Francisco [Calif.]) 1895-1913, September 21, 1902, Image 14

Image and text provided by University of California, Riverside; Riverside, CA

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85066387/1902-09-21/ed-1/seq-14/

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counties almost every extensive ; mill
plant includes several miles of . railroad,
with locomotives, cars . and • other ¦ equip
ments for transporting logs and lumber.
In .Tuolumne and Humboldt counties,
after the ax and the saw have done their
work In felling the forest giants, a sys
tem • of wire cables on the principle of
the endless chain, with stationary, englno
to "snake", the logs to the railroad land
ing, is almost" universally used. The en
gine is placed on an elevation Just above
crash of a falling tree as It comes swirl
ing through the stillness of the redwoods.
. It, is .a never to be forgotten .sound that
makes the heart throb. In some of the
I don't see where the bravery comes In;
the thing is quite common.
Kate— Guess you never have seen Mar
tha's feet— Boston Transcript
{-Ts AKINQ a trip through the city at
I this busy building se*son. one won
| ders where *U the lumber coom
| froio. Gotasr down among the
,^ aisles of lumber that Una portions
ef the water front and xratching the ves
sels that are constantly disgorging thek*
contents and adding to the layers of lum
ber, the wonder is where It all goes to.
Not la many years has there been a
greater demand for lumber in San Fran
cisco than now.
And the- great territory of the northern
counties cf California and the States of
Oregon and Washington supply us and
hundreds of other domestic and foreign
ports. In oar counties of Humboldt,
ileadocino and Dei Norte there are 900,000
acres of redwood timber land, Mendocino
bea£!ag the list with 450,000 acres. About
IS per cent of the standing lumber In
Meodocino County is spruce. It is esti
mated that In the three counties there are
¦CiCS.TOO.0CO feet of redwood standing.
This seems a never ending supply, but at
the present rate of consumption it de
creases appreciably. Redwood will cut
from fifty to seventy-five thousand feet
of lumber to the acre. It pans out the
heaviest in Humboldt County, where it
has been known to cut a million feet to the
acre. California sugar and white pine cut
about 25,000 feet to the acre.
The lumber interest represents a most
Important demand for ocean tonnage.
During the fiscal year ending June 30, 1902,
there were chartered for lumber loading
at the various Pacific Coast ports, par
ticularly at the rntti ports north of San
Francisco, 3S2 vessels of all classes and
sizes. This is exclusive of the large num
ber similarly employed In the domestic
Pacific Coast service, most of which are
engaged In bringing their cargoes to San
Francisco, Port Los Angeles and San Diego.
The X2 vessels above mentioned were
chartered to carry their cargoes to vari
ous ports in foreign countries. One of
the ships for Europe went to France, an
other to Germany and tHe remainder to
the United, Kingdom. There was one ship
to Boston and one to Philadelphia. All
others were for Pacific Ocean ports. Aus
tralia is the coast's best market and
while most of the vessels clear direct for
Sydney, several are sent to Melbourne,
Port Pirle, Adelaide, Fremantle and other
ports. Rates to Australia vary according
to the port of discharge. Sydney Is able
to exact the lowest rates, the extremes to
that port for the year being 25 shillings to
45 shillings. The extremes to other ports
in Australia are from 40 shillings to 65
shillings. Rates to South America run
from 43 shillings to 55 shillings as a rule,
though a few grot an advance on the lat
ter figure. Extremes to China are 40
shillings to 60 shillings; to South Africa,
62 shillings 6 pence to 72 shillings 6 pence;
to Europe, 60 shillings to 80 shillings,
though most of the last named accepted
70 shillings to 77 shillings 6 pence.
In IS01 the shipments to San Francisco
cf pine, epruce and fir from the Pacific
northwest amounted to 220.737.679 feet
Lumber, was exported from San Fran
cisco during the same year to the amount
of 25.417.SS7 fest, valued at $512,012. The
exports^ior 1300 amounted to 23,143,241 feet
at a valuation of $518,552.
Tbe largest proportion of lumber sent
to foreign ports In 1901 went to Australia.
That country took from us 12,812,483 feet,
worth $337,136. The smallest quantity
went to South Africa— 4000 feet, valued at
J9S. The amount of redwood shipped Into
Ban Francisco in 1901 from California
counties was from Del Norte County,
12,806,435 feet; from Humboldt County,
145,723,237, and from Mendocino County
£4.746,303 feet.
Down at the wharves on North Beach
or., at the foot of Third or Brannan
street vessels laden with from 400,000 to
LOOO.OOO feet of lumber are constantly un
loading, and still more comes in almost
daily by raiL This gives employment to
at least six, or seven hundred men in the
work of loading and unloading, hauling,
etc. on the wharves of San Francisco.
Not that the lumber business in San
Francisco is heavier than in many oth'er
cities, though this city uses an amount
of: lumber above the average in frame
buildings as compared with many Atlan
tic ports or European cities.
These men on the wharves work nine
hours a day at 40 cents per hour, and
their work Is hard labor. The redwood
comes from the northern counties of Cali
fornia, and much eugar pine and white
and yellow pine are cut there also. Last
year the mountain mills of California
cut 400,000.000 feet of sugar and yellow
pine. Tbe domestic and foreign ship
ments combined of lumber from San
Francisco in 13C1 were 142,289,078 feet In
the past more redwood than flr was used
The day of the horse and the oxen in
logging operations Is almost past, and
their places have been filled for the past
two or three years largely by the "bull
donkey" engine and the wire cable in
hauling logs to the railroad. And | in
Humboldt County as well as in other
But It is a long step from the . first
undercut in the stillness of the woods to
the wharf or planing mill of the city.
And tbe method of getting the logs, out
varies according to the character of the
country whence the lumber comes.
The logging season among the redwoods
extends through ten months of the year.:
With other- western lumber It begins the
last of March and continues to the first
of November.
In unloading by steam with the aid of
a donkey engine and a horse, and some of
the horses grow to know as much as
men, the vessels come to the dock head
on and the lumber is drawn right over
tbe bow. In some cases a heavily loaded
vessel runs into a ship and the lumber
_j)iled on the upper deck is hauled off by
steam, while that in the hold is removed
by hand. There are ten men in a section
ready to pick up ' the lumber, while two
men keep tally. Then the small trucks
carry it to the different piles, or the four
horses load it up for the city dealers.
Down at the foot of the long alleys of
lumber on the water front, it is interest-
Ing to watch tbe unloading of lumber
vessels, which is done by two methods —
by. hand and by steam. The alleys are
full of small trucks piled with . lumber
and drawn from place to .place in the
yards by one horse guided by a man who
walks by the side of the truck. Once in
a while comes along a vessel carrying as
much as 600,000 feet of lumber. It takes
from five to six days to unload such a
cargo by hand, the men working in
sections.
The dealers sell a great amount of red
wood for use in car siding and roofing,
as well as for making water tanks and
wine vats. White cedar is a good deal
in demand for inside finishings and
steamboat fittings. Much lumber is
worked up by the planing mills of the
city into house fittings, pattern work, etc.
While lumber has gone up in view of the
extremely good business and increased
demand of the past year or so, it is a
mistake to suppose that this . state of
affairs Increases the cost of residence
building to euch an extent as to make it
necessary to postpone the making of a
home until the lumber market falls again.
Estimating fifty thousand feet of lumber
to be used in a ten thousand dollar
house, the Increase In the price of lumber
per foot is hardly enough in tbe total to
make it an object to dodge It.
Much is sold to the retail dealers of tbe
city, going. to them from the wharves in
great trucks drawn by four horses and
carrying six or seven thousand feet or
more of lumber. Again, much of the red
wood for foreign countries is shipped di
rect from Humboldt Bay, and a large
per cent of fir and other lumber is ship
ped direct from Puget Sound to Africa,
the Pacific Islands and other countries.
From Oregon and Washington come
much Oregon pine, spruce, flr and red
cedar. The largest timbers come from
Washington. Lately much cedar has
been used for telegraph poles. Much
redwood and flr is used for railroad ties.
Redwood is particularly valuable for this
use, as ants and other insects do not at
tack it Large numbers of redwood ties
are shipped to Mexico, Peru, Chile and
India. Redwood has other good . points
In that it does not seem to be affected
by the weather and will not shrink, warp
or swell, which accounts for the redwood
bhingles which side and shingle three
fourths of the buildings in San Francisco.
It is also much used for foundations.
Nearly all the redwood comes to San
Francisco by vessel, though portions of
lumber from the Columbia River section
are shipped here by raiL Much of it on
reaching this port Is reshlpped at once
on foreign • vessels bound for Japan,
China, Korea, Russia, Germany and
France. The woods of the Norlh Califor
nia coast are Just beginning to be in de
mand in foreign markets. Much of it is
tent by rail to Interior points in this and
other States, and barges holding im
mense cargoes of lumber are continually
leaving for Colusa, Redwood City and
other points.
in building, but now nearly twice as
much flr is used. In 1901 355,000.000 feet
cf flr was shipped into San Francisco, ad
against 112,000,000 feet of redwood. THa
approximate amount of redwood shipped
into the city for the first five months of
1903 is 15.000.000 feet. It will average ap
proximately through th# y«ar 28.000,000 of
feet a month.
San Francisco.
Survey of One of the State's Most
Important Industries and
What It Means to
">~' : '¦¦-,-V "¦¦•-^- — iJI
more remote camps of .the norta •>««•{
and horses are still used as a means of*
hauling the logs to the railway. InT •©»»•/
camps a system of 'chutes made of loss*''
two forming the bottom and ; tw»y-.ths*.
sides and plasterefl-,with; tallow andofli
r a mif y out into : t the woods toward . th» <
various landlngsTaldn'g, the, railroad. A£.
number of logs are Ibound together wltJi;.
chains and dragged > to' 'these w
¦craping a path as they go.. One« v^l;Oj«^'.
chute, they are '-slid along ,wlth -th* 'h*!*;^'
of horses to the" landing and rolled' jm* t***'
the waiting cars.
After the logs are cut along come» -tbmr
sealer to measure : ~thelr also,, which'' If' 6 '
written In tar oir*th«;fae» of th« logs.
Next day these figures are collected and
tha result of the day's cutting turned ,4n
to the office perhaps written oa a' pin*
board. The logs are cut In size according
to orders received for them. //-*«;?. iMe.
Sometimes the pond Is so situated that
the logs are sent by chutes dowa. an in
cline of perhaps 1S0O feet and then ;xm-
Ioaded by derrick and engine Into the
pond. When they are wanted a small car
operated by a cable runs under the water
and takes them up Into the mill. Thero
the first operation before sawing Is to take
the bark off. Then the logs are sawed In
various sizes and lengths and prepared for
sale and shipment In some sections logs
are sometimes .kept In the woods . until
called for. Where a camp haa no rail
road the logs are brought to the pond la
great wagons drawn by oxen.*' ./ %\f\
;. Many lumber plants now, have^lmprpye
ments and adjuncts that simplify matters
a great deal— such as miles of electric
wire with Instruments to supply telephone
service to the remotest camps and con
nect them with the mill and yard, a code'
of electric signals to communicate intelli
gence to the engineer, machine shops for
repairing, steam tugs to tow rafts and
barges, great barges on which to trans
port lumber and steam and sailing vessels
to convey the manufactured lumber ta
ports of distribution.
Much lumber sent Into Baa ' Francisco
comes from ' Oregon's great Umber bolt
Millions of dollars' worth is annually
hewn from the wild and tangled forests.
In four counties of Northwestern Oregon
there are 1,834,960 acres containing W.U*,
200,000 feet of. lumber. Oregon- has 80,000
square miles of timber land.. Logging m
Of egon is almost entirely carried on .by
steam, and the larger mills have a capao
ity-of from 150,000 feet to 200.000 feet pear
«ay. ;C^fflH '¦.:. - :•¦ *
In 1900 It was estimated that th«s labor
in use In the lumber Industry In Oregon,
"Washington and British .Columbia! com
bined numbered 24,000 men.--. The dally pay
roll for these men amounted to $53,843, and
the yearly pay roll to tt4,00O,t65.V ? ' V
The lumber trade Is now used to em
ploying Iron ships and the beat vessels
afloat to carry lumber, "where 'years ago
any old tub was considered fit 'tar -this
use. Oregon and Washington have loaded
quite a number of iron steamers in' the
past few years. Some of them carry'car
goes equal to those of two ordinary ships.
So far -most of their cargoes have gotfe
to the Orient, where r the consumption Of
coast lumber is , rapidly -Increasing; . . Th'o
trade In Paclflc Coast lumber rivals that
of flour and grain and Is being developed
-to •till more Important proportions. •"• \? «
Kate— Martha , has got herself a daisy
rainy suit , She's what I call a brave girL
Edith— A brave girl simply because she>
is going to wear a short dress In t
a spot on the "railroad where the logs
are desired - to be dropped. The logs to
the number of five or six often In a
bunch are grappled together with dog
chain and the cable attached "to them,
sometimes across a deep canyon. Then
the engine gets in Its work and. pulls the
logs to the landing. The drum is released
and r the cable is ready for a second haul.
The lumber is loaded on the cars and
taken to the mill pond and dumped in,
there to stay and be fished out for the
mill according to the size of lumber or
dered. Or In some localities, Instead of
going to the mill by rail, the logs are
floated down a nearby stream. In the
pond- the lumber Is seasoned and kept
from shrinking. Then, after being sawed
in the mill, great piles of It are put out
to dry*
White wood and Oregon pine have
to be piled especially for drying, while
redwood Is piled solid. Redwood when
green weighs about four pounds to the
foot, but shrinks . in drying to three
.pounds or. less.- Fir when green goes
\ three and a half pounds to the foot and
when dry weighs three pounds. Redwood
runs largely to clear wood and pine to
rough. In parts of Blsklyou County- tha
logs are bound with chains and fastened
between a pair of high wheel*, perhaps
tea feet in height To them are hitched
tw» horses and the logs go en a slow,
W— king progress through the woods a
' sflafanoa «f anywhero from 100 yards
v|» fctif » Bill* to the railroad. Then
\4jQ tatikey engine lifts them on to the
CSXS and thm Journey to the mill begins.
UttTO Is not much floating of logs done
la Cfcds — ctloo. The redwood '-' butt logs
first «ot, tanblUnff most of the richness
of tbe soil, are so heavy that they do not
float readily. - - . . . . '
Tharo la something awesome in the
THE SUNDAY CALL;
14
A DAY AT THE LUMBER WHARF

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