Flumes, Booms and Sawdust: Logging in the Shuswap

Creator(s): Chase and District Museum and Archives Society

In 1908 the Adams River Lumber Company established the third largest sawmill in the Interior of British Columbia. Men were housed in logging camps in the Adams Lake area. Flumes, dams and spillways transported the logs to Shuswap Lake to be towed to the mill at Chase, British Columbia. The boom town of Chase grew almost overnight as people flocked to the area seeking employment and other opportunities. An economic downturn in 1925 prompted the Company to close its doors forever. Nevertheless, the new community struggled on.

Forestry and the People of the Shuswap Region

The demise of the Company created different opportunities for residents who chose to remain in the area. The local timber was suitable for the production of telephone and hydro poles as well as rail ties and fence posts, allowing small independent portable mills employing handfuls of men to spring up. These small operations aided in the survival of the local communities during the Depression and other lean years. Finally, in 1945 the Holding Lumber Company was established at Adams Lake which increased the population base and provided steady economic growth. This Community Memories exhibition explores the importance of forestry in the Shuswap region through these decades.

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