Calaveras County

Raggio Mill Operations

David Davis, historian, who has contributed much to our web site, mostly from the work he did for the United States Forest Service, gives us another very nice piece of history.  In this section that is completely new to the web site, he describes what was involved in running the Raggio Mill, what life was like for the lumbermen, and in general gives us a...


Logging Trucks are Rolling

Editor’s Note: This story written in 1985 by the extraordinarily gifted writer, Mary Matzek, and published in the Calaveras Enterprise documents a day’s ride by Mary with Robin Inks. Robin’s career as a log truck driver lasted until the end of the 2011 season. Robin, partly because of his long tenure, and partly because he was and is such a character, seems to have been...


Portrait of an Old Time Teamster

Editor’s note: Mary Matzek did this article in the 80’s and included some great photos that apparently the family had provided, because I’ve not been able to locate the same photos from other sources. The photos as published in the Enterprise don’t reproduce well enough for me to use them here. However, the story can stand on it’s own. I’ve included it as a sub-section...


The Amazing J.D. Conger story

When your editor was a student at Calaveras High School, two of the students he liked and admired were James Conger and Joyce Conger. They were both classy young people and reflected, I always thought, having really good parents. When I last saw Joyce, she was off to Stanford to pursue her MD. I’m not sure what management job their father, J.D..  had in the...


Jones Mill at Brice Station

Editor’s note: I’m  excerpting parts of Mary Matzek’s article in the Calaveras Enterprise in 1986. She tells the history of Brice Station and Durant Brice. The story is humorous and interesting, but I’m only going to tell the part that involves the lumber mill that was located there. I also am not going to tell what I know about my father going up to Brice’s...


Blagen Mill Photos

Click to enlarge Blagen Mill powerhouse nearly complete (click to enlarge) Blagen Mill probably in the 1950’s Blagen Lumber Company Office Enos Duart Enos Marvin Duart, Yard Superintendent at the Blagen Mill office Last two photos courtesy of Kathy Duart Richards, Granddaughter of Mr. Duart

The Sandy Gulch Mill

The newest and last of the American Box Company mIlls (American Forest Products Corp)  in Calaveras County, was the Associated Lumber and Box Company mill at Sandy Gulch. A new community was built to serve the mill workers and their families. Houses consisting of 4 rooms were built around a central area. This community was named Wilseyville in honor of Lawrence Wilsey, General Manager of...


The West Point Mills

In the 30’s and even more so in the 1940’s, there was an ever growing demand for shipping boxes. The Blagen Mill in White Pines had an outlet for its timber at a rail head at Toyon, halfway between San Andreas and Valley Springs. Toyon had a veneer plant and one of the major products at Toyon was KB board which was used to make...


Stockton Box Mill at West Point

Click to enlarge Stockton Box Mill at West Point probably in the mid 1940’s Robert Fischer who grew up in West Point, and whose father worked for Stockton Box, tells about the origins of the mill. Quoting, sometimes loosely, from Bob’s “Memoirs of a Sierra Sawmill” In 1939, the Coffenberry brothers erected a sawmill on Negro Creek, a tributary of Bear Creek, which itself flowed...


The Big Trees Hotel

When the Blagen Mill and Linebaugh Logging came to White Pines in 1938 and 1939, at least some of those who could afford it, stayed at the Big Trees Hotel. We’ve had a number of people connected to that time ask us about a photo of the hotel which burned in the mid 1940’s. Here are some of the photos of the hotel that we...


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