In the Trees: The Founding of Timber Products Company

This is the first in a series highlighting specific milestones in the history of Timber Products Company. Look for more installments in the future.

With little over one year before Timber Products Company turns 100, it is important to look back at where the company came from and how times have changed, as well as the evolution of the wood products industry.

Timber products history

Timber Products Company was founded as the Tomlin Box Company in 1918 by John Tomlin. The company’s first product was wooden boxes to hold fruit and other agricultural goods, filling a sizable need for Southern Oregon’s apple and pear orchards.

The company not only sold boxes and box shook—the set of parts for assembling boxes—to local fruit-packing houses, it also had a bustling business with farmers to the south. Oranges, lemons, berries and other sunny California produce were all packed in boxes made by John Tomlin’s company.

Tomlin Box Company grew throughout the years, spurred on by railroad construction and thriving West Coast farms. It even weathered a devastating fire at its sawmill in 1926. The focus on boxes would continue until 1930. Shortly after, John Tomlin would change his business’ name to Timber Products Company and begin manufacturing and processing pine lumber.

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