Tag Archives: Georgia Timber Industry

Logging Tram, Long County

I photographed this logging tram in 2011 near the Long/McIntosh County line and am not sure if it is still intact. Floods over the past decade have been common in the area. I’m not precisely sure how they utilized it , but there were numerous versions of these in the Southern swamps at the turn of the last century, when the timber industry was dominant and most of the old growth forests were being decimated. This one may date to the 1920s or 1930s, but could be earlier. Discussions with a friend with knowledge of the area suggest there are several other surviving remnants of old logging roads/railroads in the area and I plan to try to document some of them in the future.

R. A. Bedgood House, 1894, Arabi

Having last photographed this local landmark in 2009 [see the history of the house and a vintage photograph here], I was determined to get some photos before it is lost forever. I understand that the most recent orders began restoration efforts in the 1990s and were unable to complete the project. I believe the house could, and should, be saved, even in its present state. [I have included the date of 1894 after consulting two sources; it may have been built slightly earlier and I’ll update if I learn more].

A gazebo, which is likely of later construction, remains on the property.

The most interesting dependency, however, is this unique structure just to the left of the house. It is believed to have been Mr. Bedgood’s home office.

 

 

McArthur House, Circa 1830s, Wheeler County

Situated behind the iconic Woodland plantation house is this amazing survivor, an enclosed dogtrot thought to have been built by the first McArthur family member to settle here; their ownership of the land dates to 1827. It is possibly the oldest house in Wheeler County. After use as a storage shed for many years, it was restored in 1993.

Colonel Edward Bird House, 1870, Guyton

Colonel Edward Bird (1825-1893) was a successful timber and turpentine operator before the Civil War. He joined Company A, Squadron B, Georgia Cavalry, as Captain. It was nicknamed Captain Bird’s Mounted Company, 2nd Battalion, Georgia Cavalry. Captain Bird was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel on 17 May 1862 and took command of the 2nd Battalion. He transferred to the 5th Regiment, Georgia Cavalry on 20 January 1863 and was promoted to Colonel in 1864. He commanded the 5th Battalion until surrendering at Greensboro, North Carolina on 26 April 1865. After the war, Colonel Bird resumed his business and remained a prominent citizen of Guyton until his death.

Guyton Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

 

Harbin Lumber Company, Royston

Royston Commercial Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

A. T. Fuller House, 1955, Ocilla

Mr. Fuller’s grandson, Richard Owens, notes that the home was designed by prominent architect William Frank McCall, Jr., who was working for the Macon firm of W. Elliott Dunwoody at the time.

Woodland, 1877, Wheeler County

Passing through rural Wheeler County from Lumber City (Telfair) to Alamo, one cannot miss this Eclectic Victorian with Carpenter Gothic details. An exquisite two-story arcade (not visible in this photograph) connects the main section of the house to a rear addition. More than one friend has commented over the years that the sight of the house stopped them in their tracks. It is a standout in South Georgia, out of place in a landscape most characterized by simple vernacular dwellings.

McArthur Family, vintage photograph courtesy Elizabeth Chancellor

The McArthur family owned portions of the land around the house beginning in 1827. From the shambles of the cotton economy Walter T. McArthur (1837-1894) developed his father’s farmland into a thriving timber plantation and completed Woodland in 1877, the year of his father’s death. A Captain Renwick and Johnus Thormaholon are listed as the architects/builders. Walter was a Confederate veteran and served in the Georgia legislature from 1868-1871. His son Douglas later maintained and managed the property. It was sold in 1917 to Emory Winship (1872-1932). Winship was a career naval officer from a prominent Macon family and primarily used the house as a hunting lodge during his ownership.

The property is currently on the market.

National Register of Historic Places

Timber Protection Organization Office, Homerville

This is presently home to the Ware Visiting Nurses Service, but Tom Chandler notes that it was originally the Timber Protection Organization (TPO) office.

Parker Cabin & Commissary, Wefanie

While I was out photographing with Mike McCall today, we ran into Jimmy Parker, who noted that he was born in this cabin and restored it in recent years.

This commissary was part of the family’s timber and turpentine operations and was at its busiest during World War II.

South Georgia Snowstorm, 2018

 

Log Trucks, Hart County

As of 2017, Georgia had nearly 25 million acres of commercially available timberland, more than any other state. Forestry-related jobs are a major economic force and log trucks are familiar on roads from the mountains to the coast.