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History 1994: A mill that once was one of the largest in the nation has closed

Herald and News 1/11/14

A mill that once was one of the largest in the nation has closed, the last of its kind in Bend on the edge of the pine forests stretching the length of the dry Oregon highland. Forever ended, yesterday, Crown Pacific Ltd. of Portland, which bought the mill from DAW Forest Products Inc. on Sept. 8, closed the plant because of lack of timber. For 70 years, logs rumbled through the saws and conveyors, helping to make the mill the backbone of Bendís economy. The mill had been upgraded two years ago to a high-tech operation designed to cut second-growth trees. But Crown Pacific announced in November it would halt production at the site because there wasnít enough timber available to keep the mill going.   Miles of pine forests attracted timber barons from Minnesota shortly after the turn of the century. The Shevlin-Hixon Co. and Brooks-Scanlon sawmills began operations on opposite sides of the Deschutes River in 1915. During their heyday, the mills employed more than 1,000 workers each. Shevlin-Hixon closed in the early 50s. By the time Crown Pacific stepped in at the old Brooks-Scanlon site this summer, only 130 workers remained.

 

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