I arrived a few minutes early and was pleased to see that a good crowd was gathering. Before the program got under way, the society re-elected its officers for another term: Diane Saari, president; Barry Browning, vice president; John and Carol Winkler, treasurers; and Judy Elder, secretary.
Diane then introduced Larry, who made a made a wonderful presentation while discussing the business through the decades.
Before his grandfather purchased the business in the mid-1920s, his grandfather had been manager of the facility for several years.
Because of the Great Depression in the early to mid-30s, business was almost nonexistent, but sales picked up in the ’40s. The housing boom of the mid-50s to mid-60s was a profitable time for the company, which was operated by Larry’s father during that era.
The name change came in 1970, when the company was getting away from selling lumber and moving toward the manufacturing of roof and floor trusses, wall panels, doors and windows. As such, the customer based moved to mostly commercial and custom home builders.
During the late 1950s and ’60s, my father owned a Sunoco service station on Madison Avenue in the Edgewood area. For years we provided the primary services on all of the lumber company’s trucks. This work was done on the weekends, when the trucks were not in use. Some weekends we might have to service eight to 10 trucks (including washing them) in addition to our normal weekend business, and it would often take six to eight employees to get the work done.
Larry brought some photos with him and passed them around; they were like icing on the cake to his program. My two favorites pictures featured some of the company’s trucks, and I know that they were the ones we serviced and washed back in the day. Looking at them flooded my mind with memories.
He also had some lists of employees from the 1950s, from which I recognized several of the names as parents of my classmates.
It was a special evening. I’m sure most of us left with fond memories renewed.
Thank you, Larry.