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Lumber and Sons: White Pine Monographs Chronicle Family-Owned Mills

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Continuing the tradition that began over a century ago, the Northeastern Lumber Manufacturers Association presents modern-day editions of the White Pine Series of Architectural Monographs, a publication promoting the use of white pine as a building material. While many of the older issues focus on Colonial architecture in the Northeast, others put the spotlight on the material itself, and the people who make it available to the world. In Volume XXX, Issue II, published in 2011, we get to meet the families that run several mills, including Robbins Lumber Company and Pleasant River Lumber.

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NeLMA visited with these families and spoke to them about their passion for forestry, their sustainability practices, and how they manage transition to keep up with the changing times. Jim Robbins, for example, is a steward of the land his family owns, ensuring that both the forests and his business remain healthy. They’ve got 30,000 acres under their direct management, with 130 years of family experience. Says Jim, “You give the best soils, the best seed stock, the best management techniques and hopefully we will come out with the best pine product in the end.”

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The Brochu Brothers are the fourth generation to run Pleasant River Lumber, a 100% family-owned Maine business producing over 100 million board feet of spruce dimensional lumber and Eastern White Pine annually. While the brothers initially went their own way after college, choosing not to enter the family business, they ultimately returned, bringing fresh ideas with them.

Read the whole story in this issue of the White Pine Monographs.



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