Bentley & Emery Lumber Co.

Standard gauge, 35 & 60-lb rail

Headquarters: Richton, MS

Mill Locations: Richton, MS (Perry County)

                          Ovett, MS (Jones County)

Mill Capacity: 100,000 ft/day (Richton)

Years of Operation: 1907-1928

Miles Operated: 16 miles in 1928

Locomotives Owned

Equipment:

 

Click Map for Larger Version

History by Gil Hoffman:

In April 1907 Charles S. Bentley purchased a mill site on the southwest edge of Richton, Perry County, and began construction of a sawmill plant.  About October 1907 the mill was completed and placed in operation.  It was of the circular type with a cutting capacity of 45,000 feet per day and specialized in small timbers and dimension stock cut from longleaf yellow pine.

About November 1908 the name of the firm was changed to Bentley & Emery after Eugene A. Emery became a partner.  Both men were originally from Pennsylvania.  In addition to the old mill, a new and larger mill began operation at Richton in January 1910.  The new mill was also of the circular type with machinery by Clarke Brothers.  Its cutting capacity was from 75,000 to 100,000 feet per day, specializing in heavy timbers as long as 80 feet, for railroad purposes and the export trade. 

In early 1910, when the second mill began operation, the timber holdings of Bentley & Emery amounted to about 120,000,000 feet of longleaf yellow pine.  In August 1912 the company purchased 12,000 acres of Blodgett timber in Jones and Perry counties. 

The large mill at Richton was closed in October 1917 and moved to Ovett, Jones County.  Operations at Ovett began about September 1918, after which the remaining mill at Richton was dismantled and sold.  The Ovett mill cut out in the latter part of 1928.

Two Bentley & Emery trains meet in the woods west of Richton to exchange loads and empties.

 

 

Bentley & Emery's large mill at Ovett about 1920. The logging railroad to the northeast is on the left.

ROSTER by Gil Hoffman: 

 

 

Road No.

 

Type

 

Builder

 

C.N.

 

Date

 

Cyls.

 

Dri. Dia.

 

Engine

Wt.

 

Previous Ownership

 

 

Disposition

 

1

 

37-2

Shay

 

Lima

 

1814

 

5/1907

 

3-10x12

 

29

 

74000

 

New by C. S. Bentley.

 

Bentley & Emery #1, ca. 11/1908.

Transferred as #1 to Ovett, MS, in 1918.

D. B. Fox #1, Alene, MS, in 8/1930.

 

2

 

2-6-2

 

Baldwin

 

34092

 

12/1909

 

18x24

 

46

 

120500

 

New by Bentley & Emery.

Cost $10,000.

Baldwin class 10-30 D 32

 

Fidelity Lumber Co. #2, Doucette, TX

 Long-Bell Lumber Co. #2, Doucette, TX,

on 11/1/1922.

 

3

 

80-3

Shay

 

Lima

 

2477

 

11/1911

 

3-13x15

 

36

 

160000

 

New by Bentley & Emery.

 

Southern Iron & Equipment Co. #1276

Long-Bell Co. #3, Quitman, MS, on 4/15/1918.

 

4

 

2-6-2

 

Baldwin

 

41165

 

2/1914

 

18x24

 

46

 

120500

 

New by Bentley & Emery.

Named George L. Bounds.

Cost $10,650.

Baldwin class 10-30 D 39

 

Transferred as #4  to Ovett, MS, in 1918.

Bassett Lumber Co., Wagar, AL, by 11/1929.

Mississippi & Alabama R.R. #4, Leakesville, MS, by 3/1938.

   

 

 

 

 

                                     HOME                                              ABOUT  US                                              LINKS           

 

 

 

For more information contact Tony Howe at howe6818@bellsouth.net or David S. Price at dsprice46@bellsouth.net