Heritage \ Writings \ Industry: Lumbering

The Kneeland-Bigelow Company (Established 1901)
Location: 19th and Water Streets.

History as 1869. - Added Nov., 2010.

Official Year Book by Michigan Federation of Labor - 1907


Lumber manufacturing in Michigan is a large industry, but no other company in the state is more considerate of the welfare of its workingmen than The Kneeland Bigelow Co., located at the corner of Nineteenth and Water streets, Bay City.

The steady growth of Bay City can be attributed to such enterprising concerns as one named above, and it is an institution that our people feel a great pride in. In the execution of its business this company has added much to the popularity of Bay City as a lumber center.

D. M. Kneeland is president and Charles A. Bigelow secretary and treasurer of this company. In all their dealings with patrons and the public they have been fair and square, and they are entitled to the support and co-opertaion of all well thinking people.

Article, 1915. - Added July, 2011.

The Iron Age, Vol. 95, Issues 13-25 - April 15, 1915.

The Bigelow-Cooper Company, Bay City, Mich., has been organized with $150,000 capital stock to manufacture lumber and wood products. It has acquired a site and will at once proceed with the erection of a flooring plant, planing mill, etc. The incorporators are Charles A. Bigelow, D. M. Kneeland and James Cooper.

Article, 1923. - Added July, 2011.

National Lumberman, Vol. 70, Part 2 - 1923


Bay City, Mich., Dec. 26. An occurrence of unusual importance in the lumber industry is the announcement by The Bigelow-Cooper Co., of this city of their consolidation with Kneeland, Lunden & Bigelow Co. and The Kneeland-Bigelow Co., effective January 1, 1923. This combination will thereafter be operated jointly as a corporation under the title of Kneeland-Bigelow Co., and includes two saw mills with their entire timber resources, hardwood flooring plant, planing mill, dry kilns, salt block, docks and yards now being operated by each company.

These extensive interests are the development of a small mill operation with limited timber holdings started by D. M. Kneeland and Chas. A. Bigelow in 1901 when The Kneeland-Bigelow Co. was organized and commenced business at 19th and Water Sts., their present location. Impelled by confidence in the future of Michigan hardwoods,they continue to acquire additional stumpage and in 1905 purchased the saw mill and all timberlands of the Wylie-Buel Co. which was reorganized as Kneeland, Lunden & Bigelow Co. This acquisition established the combined interests as one of the largest timber holders and producers in the middle west. During the years following, the problem of proper marketing and distribution of their products necessitated further development, so in 1915 The Bigelow Cooper Co., was organized for the operation of a hardwood flooring plant, and to conduct a general wholesale lumber business. This company has enjoyed continuous growth since its inception, necessitating increased facilities and modern improvements until today its operations cover a great variety of interests associated with the lumber industry.

The hardwood flooring plant is one of the finest equipped and most efficiently organized operations in its line, with a capacity of 12,000,000 feet annually, producing a full assortment of sizes and grades in maple, birch and beech. A complete planing and dimension mill adds the necessary equipment for general millwork and intensive fabrication of timber products. An important adjunct to the manufacturing facilities is 16 modern dry kilns of the compartment type with a capacity of approximately 700,000 feet, which provides ample capacity for supplying kiln dried hardwood lumber to their trade. Their extensive yards covering 60 acres, including a 700 foot dock along the Saginaw River, and air drying sheds for selected hardwoods enables them to carry a complete stock of all Northern hardwoods in various assortments to supply the particular requirements of varied consuming interests.

The present officers of The Kneeland-Biglow Co., will continue as officials of the new corporation: Chas. A. Bigelow, president; Herman Lunden, first vice-president; Pierson Kneeland, second vice-president; Walter N. Wrape, secretary and treasurer.

Addition Notes.

    1910 - Hardwood Lumber (Chicago: Oct. 25, 1910)

  • The Kneeland-Bigelow sawmill plant is running day and night without a hitch, and the Kneeland, Buell & Bigelow mill, owned by the same firm, is operating 10 hours daily through the year. Dry lumber stocked by this firm are comparatively light.

    1948 - Otsego County Herald Times (February 19, 1948).

  • LUMBERMAN KNOWN IN THIS AREA EXPIRES - Charles Cottrell, 77 years old, one time resident of Bay Cty and known in Gaylord through his former association with the Kneeland-Bigelow Lumber company, died recently in Weimer, Cal., where he was living in retirement. He was buried in Bay City on February 18. Mr. Cottrell was prominent in Masonry, a past grand high priest of the grand chaptr of the Royal Arch Masons in Michigan.

Viewer Comments:

    Dec. 9, 2012 by Phil Draper.
    When Charles Bigelow reorganized in 1915 to form the Bigelow-Cooper Lumber Co. for hardwood flooring he built the complete processing plant at 800 Marquette Ave in Bay City, which consisted of a kiln, planing mills and every thing else he needed to produce hardwood lumber. This plant was last used by Fletcher Oil Comany and is still standing.

Related Notes & Pages

{Lumbering Pictorial}

Related Pages:
Bigelow, Charles A.
Kneeland, David M.
People Referenced
Bigelow, Charles A.
Cooper, James
Cottrell, Charles
Kneeland, David M.
Kneeland, Pierson
Lunden, Herman
Wrape, Walter N.
Subjects Referenced
Bay City, MI
Bigelow-Cooper Co.
Gaylord, MI
Kneeland, Lunden & Bigelow
Kneeland-Bigelow Co.
Ostego Co., MI
Weimer, CA
Wylie-Buell Co.
Circular saw
Gang saw
Salt block
Saw mill
WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.