The Lowman Mill

THE LOWMAN MILL

Benjamin W. Lowman moved his family from Ohio to Oregon and took up a homestead in the Apiary district in 1887. Lowman went into the sawmill business with a partner by the name of Gallaher.

August 14, 1891: The firm of Lowman and Gallaher has changed to Lowman and Lowman. Mr. Gallaher retiring and leaving for Idaho to try his luck sawmilling there.

 

LOWMAN’S LUCK NOT GOOD

September 16, 1892: Benjamin W. Lowman’s mill on the Clatskanie river was destroyed by fire on Friday morning [September 9, 1892]. The fire originated in the slab pile, and the mill is a total loss.

 

LOWMAN REBUILDS MILL

December 2, 1892: Mr. David M. Dorsey is now at work for B. W. Lowman on the Clatskanie river. Success to Dave and his ox team.

 

LOWMAN MILL BURNS

September 8, 1893: Lowman’s mill on the Clatskanie, about ten miles back of Enterprise, burned on Thursday, the result of a raging forest fire in that vicinity; employees had barely time for an escape. Lowman sustained a loss of about $1,600 with no insurance. This is the second time the mill has burned in two years.

 

LOWMAN REBUILDS MILL

August 2, 1901: Wilson M. Lowman moved his family from Apiary to Reuben Monday. He will haul lumber from the Lowman mill located on the S. B. Parish place on the Clatskanie to Reuben for shipment to Portland.

The Lowman mill moved often, following the supply of timber. In fact it was said that in those days it was easier to move the mill than it was to move the logs.

“Lowman had a mill on the Cornett place, that was my wife’s family, you know. They [Cornett] used one of the buildings for a barn to store hay.” — Al Erickson, long time resident of Apiary and Fern Hill, during an interview — February, 1997.

 

BOILER EXPLODES

It was when the mill was located on the Cornett place near the Apiary school that a boiler exploded, killing two family members that were employed at the mill.

Benjamin Lowman retired in 1921. His son continued operating the mill.

 

BOILER BLOWS UP

October 16, 1925: The boiler of the Lowman sawmill had a hole blown in it Wednesday morning [October 14, 1925] when the water was allowed to get too low. Workmen were not close enough to the boiler to be injured.

 

LOWMAN MILL MOVES

February 26, 1926: Rockhill is becoming a place of smoke stacks. Mr. Lowman has moved his sawmill near Vincent’s place.

 

BENJAMIN LOWMAN DIES

Benjamin W. Lowman, 91, pioneer resident of Central Columbia County, passed away at five o’clock last Thursday evening [October 22, 1936] here at the home of his son, W. Lowman. He had been in failing health for several months.

 

LOWMAN MILL SOLD

February 18, 1937: A deal was closed Monday [Feb 14, 1927] whereby T. J. Flippin and J. F. Kilby have purchased the W. Lowman sawmill in the Rock Hill district. The mill is a small one and employs only six or seven men in the mill but a like number is employed in the woods. Messrs. Flippin and Kilby will put the plant in operation as soon as possible, starting the work at once. They will cut all the timber near the mill first, after which time they will move the plant farther on, where they own about 4,000,000 feet of timber. Later, a planer and other equipment will be added.

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