While driving Hwy 28 in west-central Arkansas, my friend Frank noticed a sign that said “Old Forester 1-mile” pointing off down a side-road. He asked me and I just shrugged … the only Old Forester I could think of was a brand of whiskey my dad used to drink. Curiosity got the best of us, so we turned around and went to check it out…
It turns out that Forester was a “company-town” that used to be – but is no more. No kidding – the whole place packed up and moved over 50 years ago, leaving only the roads and the foundations of many of the buildings. And it was a Company Town in the truest sense – completely built and owned by the Caddo River Lumber Company in 1930. It was self-contained and had everything you’d expect in a small town of the time (including segregation). After the sawmill closed in September of 1952, many of the buildings were sold and moved or scrapped for lumber.
These days a park has been made around the ruins of the old sawmill and it’s log-pond. This panorama was taken on the last Saturday of 2013 overlooking the pond, and you can see the unusual concrete structures that are all that’s left of the old mill. Make’s a powerful black-and-white image too …
You can learn more about Forester from the link below :
- (Please note: forestersawmill.org no longer seems to be maintained.)
You can find Forester about 20-miles southeast of Waldron, Arkansas – More photos of this unique place can be found with the Forester Tag.