Eastern White Pine

Eastern White Pine was the undisputed King of the northeastern woods. It is said to have reached heights of 240 feet and diameters of 5 to 8 feet prior to European colonization. These trees were much larger than anything left standing in Europe and early settlers in New England marveled at their size. In 1605, George Weymouth, a Captain in the British Royal Navy, recognized the potential value of these tall, straight pines for making ship masts for the Crown. England was desperate for a source of good mast wood for her ships because her own lands had been almost entirely deforested. The combination of its light weight and strength made the newly discovered Eastern White Pine the perfect choice. Consequently, the first English lumber mill was built and put into service in York, Maine in the year 1623. The vast virgin forest had become a gold mine for New England almost overnight. Everything was made from it, even the ships that ferried the lumber.


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