Oconto County WIGenWeb Project
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Oconto County, Wisconsin
Mountain Memories
Pages 26 - 27
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Many other landings were created along the lines of the Chicago & Northwestern Railway as it stretched its lines deep into the heart of these woodlands, and •spurs' of rail lines ran off the main line at various points throughout the area. Logging operations such as Holt Lumber Company/ Oconto Company, Ansen Eldred and Post & Gilkey were to be accommodated by these 'spurs' running into their camps that had previously been built along the Oconto River.
The use of the railroad changed the means of transporting the great wealth of the forest, but the work of cutting, piling, and preparing the wood for the sawmill remained much the same. The logging operations of Henry Kingston, Sever Anderson, and Martin Olson employed many of the Mountain area settlers in the early 1900s.
But before we continue, let us recall the days when rivers and streams were the mainstay in the logging industry. Dams were built at points along the Oconto River to impound the use of the flowing waters for the spring drive. One was located just north of Mountain called Farm Dam and another further north was called Tar Dam. The logging camps were built in close proximity to these dams, the Eldred Farm growing up out of the wilderness provided the lumberjacks with food and shelter during the long winters.
These dams were still in use even though the railroad extended lines deep into the forests enabling the logging companies to set up camps further inland from the main waterways. A spur was built to circle around the west side of Mountain from a point about one half mile south of the townsite reaching the Oconto River's north branch just below Thomas McAllen's farm. Here a structure called a 'hoist was built upon a sunken pier and platform. The floating pine logs were removed from the river and loaded onto flat cars. Thomas McAllen also had a sawmill at this site. The logs which had continued their journey to the south in earlier days, were now to become the lumber for a growing area, or shipped south by rail.
I recall the landing area in Mountain being filled with summer activity when I was a lad. I especially enjoyed watching the skill of the axe men as they made
the ties for the railroad company. The short logs were first scored on two opposite sides with a double bit axe. The 'tie maker1 would wield his heavy broad-axe and hew the timber to the lines. The short slabs then fell away, leaving the two sides as if they had been planed, with only a faint line of the initial scores to be seen on the smooth surface of the tie. I also remember watching the men peel the 40 to 50 foot long poles for the telegraph and telephone poles for which they were to be used. There they worked upon a thick, springy bed of cedar all around the peeling area.
The coming of the railway brought new employment opportunities into the Mountain area. Year-round employment could now be found by those who were in the logging industry, for summers were filled with activity and wages to be earned, at the landing. Also the Town od Armstrong hired many local settlers to make up road crews which continued to improve area road systems.
During the years 1900 to 1910, there was a rapid influx of Swedish settlers to these lands, and the family of John Sandberg arrived during that period, immigrating from Hillsland, Sweden. A.P. Olson, who was of Norwegian ancestry, had come to this area south of Mountain in the year 1893, with his wife Anna and their daughters, Tillie and Annie. Anna, who was born in Hillsland, Sweden immigrated to America with her husband, Andrew and daughters in 1890, settling in Mosling before moving here to Mountain. The John Sandberg family was to join them here upon their arrival in America in 1901. Gustave and Nels, the eldest sons of the Sandberg family, had come the previous year and purchased land near the home of P. A. Olson for their family's use when they arrived. Thus the origin of our fondly termed 'Swede Town", a farming region along the North Branch Road, was created. John and his wife, Anna, with their six daughters and two sons settled upon these cutover lands on the southeast side of Mountain. Here the men would find employment in the logging camps and their dreams of owning land and building a home for their families was a vision to be realized in the coming years.
A family tree of the John and Anna Sandberg family

Many other landings were created along the lines of the Chicago & Northwestern Railway as it stretched its lines deep into the heart of these woodlands, and 'spurs' of rail lines ran off the main line at various points throughout the area. Logging operations such as Holt Lumber Company/ Oconto Company, Ansen Eldred and Post & Gilkey were to be accommodated by these 'spurs' running into their camps that had previously been built along the Oconto River.
The use of the railroad changed the means of transporting the great wealth of the forest, but the work of cutting, piling/ and preparing the wood for the sawmill remained much the same. The logging operations of Henry Kingston/ Sever Anderson, and Martin Olson employed many of the Mountain area settlers in the early 1900s.
But before we continue, let us recall the days when rivers and streams were the mainstay in the logging industry. Dams were built at points along the Oconto River to impound the use of the flowing waters for the spring drive. One was located just north of Mountain called Farm Dam and another further north was called Tar Dam. The logging camps were built in close proximity to these dams, the Eldred Farm growing up out of the wilderness provided the lumberjacks with food and shelter during the long winters.
These dams were still in use even though the railroad extended lines deep into the forests enabling the logging companies to set up camps further inland from the main waterways. A spur was built to circle  -around the west side of Mountain from a point about ' one half mile south of the townsite reaching the Oconto River's north branch just below Thomas McAllen's farm. Here a structure called a 'hoist was built upon a sunken pier and platform. The floating pine logs were removed from the river and loaded onto flat cars. Thomas McAllen also had a sawmill at this site.  The logs which had continued their journey to the south in earlier days, were now to become the lumber for a growing area, or shipped south by rail.
I recall the landing area in Mountain being filled with summer activity when I was a lad. I especially enjoyed watching the skill of the axe men as they made
26
the ties for the railroad company. The short logs were first scored on two opposite sides with a double bit axe. The 'tie maker' would wield his heavy broad-axe and hew the timber to the lines. The short slabs then fell away, leaving the two sides as if they had been planed, with only a faint line of the initial scores to be seen on the smooth surface of the tie. I also remember watching the men peel the 40 to 50 foot long poles for the telegraph and telephone poles for which they were to be used. There they worked upon a thick, springy bed of cedar all around the peeling area.
The coming of the railway brought new employment opportunities into the Mountain area.  Year-round employment could now be found by those who were in the logging industry, for summers were filled with activity and wages to be earned, at the landing. Also the Town od Armstrong hired many local settlers to make up road crews which continued to improve area road systems. During the years 1900 to 1910, there was a rapid influx of Swedish settlers to these lands, and the family of John Sandberg arrived during that period/ immigrating from Hillsland, Sweden. A.P. Olson, who was of Norwegian ancestry, had come to this area south of Mountain in the year 1893, with his wife Anna and their daughters, Tillie and Annie. Anna/ who was born in Hillsland, Sweden immigrated to America with her husband, Andrew and daughters in 1890/ settling in Mosling before moving here to Mountain. The John Sandberg family was to join them here upon their arrival in America in 1901. Gustave and Nels, the eldest sons of the Sandberg family, had come the previous year and purchased land near the home of P. A. Olson for their family's use when they arrived. Thus the origin of our fondly termed 'Swede Town', a farming region along the North Branch Road, was created. John and his wife, Anna, with their six daughters and two sons settled upon these cutover lands on the southeast side of Mountain. Here the men would find employment in the logging camps and their dreams of owning land and building a home for their families was a vision to be realized in the coming years.
A family tree of the John and Anna Sandberg family