..THE FOREST AROUND US
by Bill Moore....
....The forest around us, here in British
Columbia, is so often taken for granted by the people living here. If
I were king I’d make everyone leave the province for a trip to
a nice flat desert spa or a crowded city in Europe, just so they would
return and realize the importance and beauty of this forested land of
ours. But gee, I’m not king so we’ll just have to stumble
along as best we can.
who say “the loggers of today aren’t like the oldtimers of yesterday.”
....Why should they be! I grew up with oldtimers who bust their backs lifting heavy rigging about and were weighed down with heavy awkward clothing in poor weather. The machines were de-veloped to help man and the logger was one fellow who sure as heck needed help. The old fashioned way and the modern way, both allow for pride of work – brains or brawn or both.
....I remember one man who had pride as a logger. His name was Tom Bur-nette and he was a steam donkey fireman. Tom had a crippled hand and was getting a bit past his prime, but he still had aspirations to be a steam don-key engineer. If he could only get the traveling boiler inspector to pass him.
....It was in the late thirties and we had two 11 x 13 Willamettes as coldeck donkeys and a 13 x 14 Washington as an A-frame donkey. The boiler in-spector
....Would write to camp as week ahead to announce his day of inspection. So the night before, the wood fires would be pulled from the fire boxes, the grates cleaned off and the big smokestake tipped over so the inspector could view the top of the boiler tubes. All work ceased on boiler inspection day and the crew lay in. The engineers would be at their machines and have the boiler cleaned off and painted up.
....My father would always assign Old Tom to accompany the boiler inspector on his rounds of the three steam-pots. Tom would carry the inspector’s little leather satchel that contained his hammer and chisels and small tools.
It was a great day for Tom. He was sure each year the inspector would
break down and give him a steam certificate, but it never happened.
Tom was never dismayed. As they made the rounds he would tell the inspector
what fine machines they were – even though they were old and he
was constantly cutting down their allowable steam limit. But Tom never
gave up – wait until next year! He was a hell of a fireman and
no engineer ever had to wait steam on Tom Burnette. Old fashioned pride.
British Columbia Lumberman, May, 1979
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Well, even not knowing the rules, our big fellow, Ron Hartill won a first place in one of the five events. It was a very exciting occasion when “Kanada” was declared a winner of the Gold and Ron walked up to stand on the top of the three tiered stage. The Minister of Forests for Finland presented the large medal and ribbon and in addition a beautiful glass vase.
The cheers and good feeling of all the audience and participants from so many countries made you feel rather glad to be a logger. I know Ron felt a real pride in being able to compete and win against so many fine competitors. There was loggers’ pride aplenty that night in Finland and it encompassed a lot of different nationalities of loggers.
Pride to some sounds like a corny word today. It’s too bad, because when I find a logging camp with a bunch of people who get along pretty well, conscious of their safety record and go out and do a good day’s logging, I find I have run into a proud bunch of loggers. And those kinds of camps and operations do exist today in a lot of places across this land. The logger is as good as he ever was – it’s just the perennial skeptics that need a shove in the butt – but –
Keep them out of the bight,
British Columbia Lumberman, May, 1979