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Lumber & Timber

Lumber and Timber Industry

The cypress trees that fill most of South Louisiana’s swamps provided a means for the people to earn a living in a new way other than fishing, hunting, and trapping. These trees served as one of the main building materials for major cities like Baton Rouge, New Orleans, and beyond.

Lumber Mills in the Area

One of the largest lumber mills in the area was located in Belle River and run by the Gaudet family. The mill employed many local workers and provided them with a good living. The Gaudet family’s mill was one of the biggest employers in the area, and it played a significant role in the local economy.

Cutting and Pulling Cypress Trees

Many locals worked cutting and pulling the huge cypress trees from the swamp using pull boats. These boats pulled the heavy trees out from the swamp where they could then be transported to the lumber mills in the area. This work was difficult and dangerous, but it provided a good living for those who were willing to do it.

Impact on the Area

The lumber and timber industry had a significant impact on the local area. It provided jobs and a means of earning a living for many families in the area. It also helped to build major cities like Baton Rouge and New Orleans by providing the building materials needed to construct homes, businesses, and other structures.

Old picture of lumbermen in woods with cut down lumber from trees
Preservation Efforts

Today, there are efforts to preserve the cypress trees and the swamp ecosystem that they support. Many people recognize the importance of preserving this unique environment and the industry that grew out of it. By protecting the swamps and the cypress trees that grow there, we can ensure that future generations will be able to enjoy their beauty and appreciate their historical significance.

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