Salvaging timbers from America

We're about to pour the footers in Portland, I'm told as I do a jammed week in New York. Should be back on the left coast Friday afternoon to see the gang finish, re-bar sticking up through roughly screed concrete, curing a bit while waiting for Monday's start on the block, a wood-fiber and portland cement concoction by Shelterworks, and made nearby in Philomath, Oregon. I'll need to fill you in on more detail as we get started, because this isn't normal stuff.

But as I lay here thinking about sleep, I'm also thinking that we've now set an actual-and-honest-to-goodness-don't-mess-with-me timber frame raising date. Saturday, May 2nd. We'll have a tent and good beer.Llet me know if you think you may come. Come even if you don't let me know.

Which then makes me think about the timber frame, cut in our McMinnville shop a while ago while we worked for the permit, patiently waiting for its day, and sawn from Douglas-fir timbers we salvaged from the Mersman Furniture Factory in Celino, Ohio this last summer. Michele Caryl, who took over my job as wood buyer a few years back, mostly because she's better at it than me, writes about the

"The factory was built in 1905. If you do a Google search under “Mersman Table Factory” you will also find some interesting information linking the Lindbergh baby kidnapping to a Mersman table.

I have included (a photo) that you might appreciate. The mannequin head was floating in water in the basement and I spotted her in my flashlight as I started down the stairs. My gasp was very entertaining to the guys showing me the building. I think they may have planted her there."

Wood stories imitating life.

Maxine did further research, reporting that the factory survived WWI and II, and of course the Great Depression, where they were buoyed by a good cost-value ratio and therefore sold well, despite the times. Sound familiar? Her research also turned up this Mersman corner table on Ebay, which she was threatening to buy. Sorry, you are so too late.