The men and trees of Chicoutimi


everything about the area. We saw the river drives of the Price company and we picked the wild blueberries of northern Quebec. And we met so many fine people—all through the tireless efforts of Albert Dufour. “Albert—il pleut!”
....Jacques Geadreault is logging manager of Pamouscachiou. He is a well built man with an understanding of men. There are no staff tables in the large cookhouse, you eat where you sit. Jacques, like all the men in camp, was taken by the loggers sports events. He saw to it that a good area was used for the show and three big trucks were brought in for the audience to get a better view of the performance. Jacques has a big job in the production of this camp. Because of the yield per acre the company must work over a large area and this means a constantly moving manager. We could see that Jacques Gaudreault had the respect of his crew and the backing of his boss “Jacques—Les Expos de Montreal est magnifique!”
....The B.C. loggers presented their show for the men of Pamouscachiou at 6:30 the evening we were there. Jube Wickheim and the others had set up the axe target we took with us from B.C. and with bucking and chopping wood given us at the camp we were able to give the men a good sample of loggers’ sports. The entire crew turned out and I am sure that no finer reception could be given to anyone than was given our B.C. Loggers. After the show we presented a gold hard hat with “Festival of Forestry” imprinted to Laurier Larouche, a big man who has been an employee of Price since he was a boy. He now operates his own Timberjack and has two partners and they are a top team
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....There are machines and there are people in this forest around us in Canada and by far the most interesting are the people. May I tell you of some very fine people I recently met in Northern Quebec? They are typical of the real Canadians who have derived their living from the great forests of this country down through the decades.
....It was my pleasure along with five logging sports champions from B.C. to visit the logging areas of Price Company Ltd. in and around their sawmill, planer, and logging operations north of the St. Lawrence River in the Chicoutimi district of Quebec. We were there on behalf of the Festival of Forestry of B.C. to demonstrate the logging skills of our loggers and to encourage the Quebec forest industry to join with us in an eventual cross country competition of loggers sports.
....The six of us were actually a part of a 25 strong delegation—the others being made up of graduating students of forestry and education from Simon Fraser University, University of B.C. and British Columbia Institute of Technology. It was truly a most rewarding tour. The hospitality of our hosts, the Laval Faculty of Forestry, the Quebec Forest Industries Association and the Price people, will long be remembered by all 25 of us.
....We were shown, taught, guided and made aware of the vast forest industry of Quebec and in return we have asked if we, the Festival of Forestry, can host a like number of Quebec students and loggers next year in B.C. Our five champion loggers, Brian Herlihy, Ron Hartill, Art Williams, Owen Carney and Jube Wickheim staged a logging sports demonstration each day of our trip and were received with a great enthusiasm by crowds at Laval University, in Quebec City, by millworkers and townspeople of Chicoutimi and by the loggers of the world’s largest logging camp — Pamouscachiou.


....This camp of Price Co. holds five hundred men and operates in the Black Spruce forest north of the Laurentian Mountains and east of Lake St. John. We culminated our tour with a demonstration of loggers’ sports events in the Place Ville Marie in downtown Montreal before several thousand people.
....Ninety million board feet of saw logs and 135,000 cords of pulpwood are the production goals of Prices’ Pamouscachiou camp. This type of production comes from an area that supports 15 to 20 cords of trees per acre. It takes a lot of roads. And good roads they were too, in fact better than many of the so-called main logging roads on the coast. And it takes the right kind of men from top manager to tree cutters to keep a flow of wood going from the camp to the sawmill and planer mill above Chicoutimi.
....I will write more of the week long trip into the Quebec forest industry next month, but now if I may I would like to introduce to you some of the men of the Chicoutimi area who are a part of this forest around us in Canada.
The cook’s name was Claude Levesque and he ran a small cookhouse for Price Cop. At the base of Lake Onatchiway, a part of the lake-reservoir and river drive system of transporting wood from the Price limits north of their base at Chicoutimi. Claude looked after the boom men from the lake crew and any of the Price drivers or people passing through. Claude was a friend to everyone, he was the man with news to those passing by and his kettles of fine smelling stew were enjoyed by six hungry B.C. loggers. “Merci – Monsieur Claude!”
....If you are only English speaking, as the five other loggers and myself were, and are heading into the forests of northern Quebec I would advise two things—be interested in what you will see and have a French-English speaking guide like Albert Dufour with you. This very amiable man from the personnel division knew everyone and

British Columbia Lumberman, October, 1972

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of cutters and skidders in the camp. Many of the crew wanted to try the axe throw after the show and Laurier took the axe-throwing like a duck to water. I can still see him with his gold hard hat aiming his axe at the target and his fellow workers yelling encour-agement. “Laurier—attention a la hache!”
....There were so many other men who made our trip to this northern Quebec logging camp so enjoyable. We will remember William Savard, the general superintendent of the camp. A sensible and intelligent man who walked among his men. Thomas George Cote, the mechanical foreman of Pamouscachiou who had to keep the hungry “slashers” working on a 24-hour shift. We watched this giant Tanguay machine working from the road with its hydraulic grapple picking up three or four tree lengths from piles and feeding a double circular saw that cuts the trees to cordwood size and sent them up a chute to drop into the waiting boxes of the big trucks.
....But of the men of the forest I met I shall not forget one—Maurice Fortin. A strong, stocky, quiet man who was the mechanical Supervisor for the Shipshaw Division. Maurice did not speak English and I did not speak French—we were typical of many Canadians of East and West. And yet as we came to know and understand each other the distance of language was broken and we were two loggers with common problems. Possibly if the politicians both English and French, would stop crying about the so-called English Canadian—French Canadian problem and how to solve it, if those politicians would stop meddling in the situation, we might live together without worries. For we are all Canadians with nothing to fear if we use our common sense. “Maurice—Le statue – c’est bon!”

....We six loggers from Colombie Britannique traveled into the northern logging areas of Quebec and met the people. Their hospitality was magni-ficent, their interest in loggers sports was exuberant, and as loggers, they take no second place to anyone in Canada. The forest around us in Canada is indeed a place of interesting people. Merci beaucoup, L’hommes du Pamouscachiou.

Keep out of the bight,


British Columbia Lumberman, October, 1972