Rosewood History

Sawing logs at Rosewood

The Rosewood Saw Mill – by Jeanie Pender

Years ago some old philosopher said that the man who added to the production of a nation was a benefactor. Arguing on such a basis Messrs Ruhno and Maher, as saw-millers, must be classed under this category.

The saw mill has always emitted a loud persistent buzz of activity and prosperity, and with every rapid revolution of the various saws the nation’s production is being increased. They employ a number of men constantly at the Rosewood saw mills, besides being indirect employees of many others in the lumber districts of Hidden Vale, Narang, Linville, Blackbutt and more. 

At the local mills they distribute in wages considered considerably over £1400 per annum, whilst the man with the axe and the small pockets many thousands more. Not only are they benefactors, but modern man of energy, surcharged with enterprise and then unconquerable determination, and that characteristic bulldog spirit -all obstacles must give way. It is the spirit that has carried them well to the top in the sawmilling world, and although they have never known what it is to be short of “orders,” they never relax their activity.

The mill is well fitted and equipped and it’s breaking-down bench-45 feet long-is the longest in Queensland, one of the firm informed us. The rush of orders has been so great of late that certain parts of the engine have been replaced with the object of obtaining greatest steam power, and, consequently, an additional output. And this is badly required, for the firm has often to refuse orders. For months it has been the same, and the monotony of the thing was reflected in the voice of Mr Maher as he plaintively said, “If we didn’t receive an order for two months, we could keep the mill going.” 

Last year £2500 was paid for rough pine ,and much more good solid coin of the realm for log timber -both hard and soft. On an average about 50,000 feet of hard wood and 35,000 feet of soft wood are cut per month, but the mill machinery is so excellent, and the appliances the latest, that these totals could be blotted out. Not only is a thriving trade pushed in timber, but the firm also pockets many shekels by the sale of firewood. Then again it has made a reputation for dressed timber and, that it is no bubble one is shown by the fact that the government has in trusted them with between 20 and 30 orders for timber for workmen’s houses, under the Workmen’s Building Act. 

The turnover is some £800 per month, so that much money floating around Rosewood and locality must do a great deal of good to the town and district. Mr Maher laughs at the idea that the timber is giving out, and stoutly avers that logs are being received at the mill equal to any cut twenty years ago.

[Rosewood Register and Marburg Mail,  29 March 1913]