Hassinger Lumber Company
Martin Luther Hassinger, the donor's grandfather, purchased a sawmill in Forest County, Pennsylvania in 1880, beginning the Hassinger family's long involvement in the lumber business. In 1905, his son, Luther Hassinger, moved the family lumber operations to the White Top Mountain area of Washington County, Virginia and organized the Hassinger Lumber Company. Around the lumber operations, the town of Konnarock was established with a company-operated lodge, store, and school. At this time, the company extended W. B. Minega's Virginia Carolina Railroad from Damascus, Virginia to Konnarock. The Virginia Carolina was acquired by the Norfolk and Western Railroad in 1912. [Note: the Virginia Creeper Trail established in 1987 follows the route of the abandoned rail line from Abingdon, Virginia to the North Carolina state line.] Owning the mountain and over 30,000 acres, Hassinger Lumber became one of the largest timber producers in the eastern United States, at one time helping make Washington County the largest exporter of timber in the country. At the height of operations, the company employed over 400 workers. Luther's son, Martin Hassinger, worked at the Konnarock site from 1926 until the operations were suspended and the property sold in 1928. In 1929-30, Luther Hassinger appraised the property being studied for the creation of the future Great Smoky Mountains National Park and was instrumental in the park's establishment.
Found in 1 Collection or Record:
The Hassinger Lumber Company Collection consists of one VHS-videotape (70 minutes) on the history of the company (1880-1928), its lumber business in Pennsylvania and Virginia and involvement in the construction of rail lines in the latter state.