Every Piece of Antique Wood is Part of a Larger Story

Every Piece of Antique Wood is Part of a Larger Story

When you walk into the Goodwin Company showroom, you walk into a room appointed with beautiful interior design and woodworking, custom creations, and family history.  Our own Jeffrey Forbes decided to add even more character, bringing novels from his personal book collection in for a bit of show and tell.  The Lightwood Series, authored by Brainard Cheney, sheds light on some of America’s forgotten history.

Cheney’s first historical fiction Lightwood, tells the tale of the Dodge Timber Wars in Georgia that took place in the post-Civil War era.  William E. Dodge led several northern investors in purchase of 300,000 acres of attractive, virgin growth longleaf pine forests.  However, the same climax forests were already occupied by generations of the local citizens.  Driven by power and greed, Dodge set out to prove these forests were legally his to do with what he pleased.  This led to an ugly and dangerous “war” between the locals and the investors for nearly half a century before finally coming to an end. Though devastating, conflict was not uncommon in these times when harvesting the 85 to 90 million acres of longleaf forests was the primary business.  Ultimately, the longleaf (referred to as The Wood That Built America) was used to construct lovely Victorian homes and buildings across the Eastern US.  The caissons of the Brooklyn Bridge in New York are made of pine, allowing underwater construction to take place.  Hotels and palaces across Europe also use the wood for building.

Cheney is also the author of River Rogue, This Is Adam, and Devil’s Elbow.  Come visit Goodwin to inquire about these novels, see more in our showroom, and let us help cater to your antique wood needs!

Whatever You Desire For Reclaimed Wood… Goodwin is Here to Help

Whatever You Desire For Reclaimed Wood… Goodwin is Here to Help

Howard Brickman Teaching a Wood Flooring Inspection Class at Goodwin Company’s Micanopy, Florida Headquarters.

For over four decades, Goodwin has connected with many highly respected wood flooring professionals.

The article below on wood floor cupping is written by longtime Goodwin friend and colleague Howard Brickman. Howard was the first ever Technical Director of the National Wood Floor Association and he has taught several wood floor inspection classes at Goodwin.

Recently, Howard traveled to Bermuda to install 10,000 square feet of our River Recovered® Antique Heart Pine Flooring. Quite impressive as Bermuda has a climate that requires considerable expertise to install wood flooring at the correct moisture content and conditions!

Our connections with wood flooring professionals help ensure that your project is completed as smoothly as possible. We can connect you with highly respected industry experts and communicate with them over the course of your project.

Stuck on a wood flooring project… or looking to get started… Call Goodwin at 800-336-3118.

 

 

Goodwin Project Featured in New LAKE|FLATO Architects’ Book

Goodwin Project Featured in New LAKE|FLATO Architects’ Book

Goodwin Company partnered with LAKE|FLATO architects in San Antonio, Texas to provide our River-Recovered® and reclaimed Heart Cypress for the construction of the Eleanor and Nicholas Chabraja Visitor’s Center at Naples Botanical Garden. The end result was gorgeous – so much so that it is among the 15 projects detailed in LAKE|FLATO Architects’ new book, Nature | Place | Craft | Restraint. If you liked what Goodwin did for the Naples Botanical Garden, you’ll definitely want to check out the other amazing projects in this new book!

River-Recovered and reclaimed wood is trending in 2021.  If you have an upcoming remodeling, historic restoration or new construction project, our antique wood specialists can help select the perfect species to warm up your home or commercial space.  Give us a call to learn more today.

Be sure to follow our new Daily Log on Twitter. It’s chock full of fun facts and interesting tidbits.  We invite you to take a short break from the workday to see what news floats down the river!

LAKE|FLATO Architects Releases New Book

A few years ago, Goodwin Company partnered with LAKE|FLATO architects in San Antonio, Texas to provide our River-Recovered® and reclaimed Heart Cypress for the construction of the Eleanor and Nicholas Chabraja Visitor’s Center at Naples Botanical Garden. We’re happy to announce that this is one of the 15 projects detailed in LAKE|FLATO Architects’ new book,  Nature | Place | Craft | Restraint. If you liked what Goodwin did for the Naples Botanical Garden, you’ll definitely want to check out their other amazing projects in this new book!

River-Recovered® Heart Pine Doors Built for the Century

The Century Tower is part of the University of Florida’s (UF) Campus Historic District, which was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1989. The Century Tower is one of four carillons in the state of Florida. This impressive structure holds a total of 61 bells spanning five octaves and chimes 61 bells every quarter hour for 12 hours a day (8:00am – 8:00pm).

The Gothic style tower was designed by William Augustus Edwards, an esteemed architect of the mid-20th century. It was built by The Auchter Company. Construction commenced in 1953 and was completed in 1956.

Tower Dedication Ceremony

While the tower itself has withstood the test of time and harsh Florida weather and humidity, its second generation doors became severely damaged and were rotting at the base.  When it became time to restore the Century Tower to its original splendor, Goodwin was called in to help.

Second Generation Doors

The Century Tower’s new third generation doors are constructed using Goodwin’s River-Recovered® Heart Pine.  The panels utilize Goodwin’s River-Recovered Heart Pine Select, while the stiles and rails are constructed using River-Recovered Heart Pine Vertical.  Goodwin partnered with historic preservation craftsman Scott Sidler at Austin Historical in Orlando, Florida on the project.

Century Tower Doors Constructed Using Goodwin’s River-Recovered Heartpine

Photographs of the New Century Tower by Isabella Guttuso.

Careful Craftsmanship Makes the Difference!

We often talk about how Goodwin’s wood meets or exceeds the highest industry grading standards.  This is important, especially when it comes to antique wood such as River-Recovered® and reclaimed heart cypress and heart pine.  However, another crucial component of delivering the highest quality antique wood on the market is craftsmanship.

The antique wood specialists at Goodwin take time and care to ensure each board is produced to the exact specification. Our process may take longer, but we do not believe in producing our products in bulk.  When you purchase a Goodwin, you have the comfort of knowing that each and every board was handcrafted to perfection!

Our antique wood specialists can help you design the space of your dreams.  Give us a call to learn more today.

A Closer Look at Sinker Cypress

Paula and Randy from Florida Crotchwood Mobile Sawmill drop by on occasion to saw River-Recovered® heart cypress logs into beautiful slabs that can be handcrafted into gorgeous mantles, tables, shelves, signage, accents and anything else you can imagine.

This video shows our own Joe Collins skillfully crafting a fireplace mantle out of a River-Recovered heart cypress slab.  Take a look:

Often referred to as, “The Wood Eternal”, antique heart cypress (a.k.a. sinker cypress) is one of the few remaining prehistoric species.  Coloring can vary, displaying anything from warm honey to light chocolate tones. Traditional grades (Select, Vertical) can feature a plain sawn feathery, subtle arching swirling grain and, in some cases, vertical pinstripes. Midnight, Pecky, and Character heart cypress each have their own distinguishing characteristics for a more unique look.

Looking to incorporate heart cypress into your upcoming design project? If so, the antique wood specialists at Goodwin can help you determine which grade of heart cypress best suits your upcoming project. Give us a call to learn more today!

Properly Kiln Drying Antique Wood

Rare, antique wood must be handled with great care.  One reason why Goodwin is considered the industry gold standard is our meticulous kiln drying process. There are many reasons for properly kiln drying the wood to a consistent moisture content, including eliminating and preventing mold and bugs. Our founder and company sawyer, George Goodwin, ensures each board is properly kiln dried and precisely milled to the highest standards.  Let’s take a look at our signature kiln drying process.

Prepping the Wood

We examine each River-Recovered® log and reclaimed board or beam to ensure we are preserving the best and most beautiful sections of the wood. Our company sawyer, George Goodwin, carefully saws the wood.  The ends of the boards are then sealed with a wax-based product to prevent cracking and checking.

Air Dry

The sawn wood then needs time to properly air dry. It takes a few weeks for River-Recovered heart pine to achieve its ideal moisture content. River-Recovered heart cypress can take several months due to a higher fiber saturation point.

Pre Dry

After air drying, the wood is then sent to Goodwin’s ‘pre-dryer’, which is comprised of 16 fans (4’ across each) that blow air across the boards in stacks. We allow 1” between each layer to ensure the air circulates around each board.

Dehumidification Dry Kiln

Antique heart pine and heart cypress is very dense. Kiln drying fast with steam causes cracking and checking. Goodwin has invested in a dehumidification dry kiln that dries the wood slowly over the course of several weeks to ensure the ideal moisture content is achieved without affecting its quality.

Monitor Moisture Content

The moisture content of the wood is monitored several times a day. We slowly increase the temperature until 140 degrees is consistently achieved across the entire load. Once the wood comes out of the kiln, we let it relax for a few days before milling it into our signature River-Recovered and reclaimed heart pine and heart cypress.

The following video shows pallets of River-Recovered and reclaimed wood being placed into our dehumidification dry kiln.  Enjoy!

Antique Heart Pine to the Rescue!

Many historic homes were constructed using original virgin growth pine flooring. Goodwin works with both homeowners and building design professionals to custom mill River-Recovered® and reclaimed heart pine floor parts to replace damaged areas. This allows the homeowner to keep as much of the original historic floor as possible and while still maintaining the status of “100% virgin growth pine” flooring.

Our good friend Bill Conway in Potomac, Maryland needed to repair some parts of his pine flooring due to termite damage. We milled 2-1/4″ River-Recovered® vertical heart pine to replace the bad sections of floor. Conway also built a trapdoor using River-Recovered heart pine vertical to access the space beneath his house.

Take a look:

Other projects we were proud to work on involved milling replacement heart pine for the historic St. Clair Whitman home in Cedar Key, Florida and Edson Keith Mansion in Sarasota, Florida. Pictures of the Edson Keith flooring were taken prior to sanding and finishing. Notice the difference in patina and the way the new floorboards match up with the old ones:

Antique River-Recovered and reclaimed heart pine feature the same tight graining and resinous heartwood as the original virgin growth heart pine flooring that was often used in the construction of historic buildings. The color of the wood will not immediately match, but exposure to light will darken the patina over time. Eventually, the woods become nearly indistinguishable.

Do you have a historic home or building that has virgin growth pine that needs replaced? If so, we can help.  Give us a call to learn more today!

A New Chapter Begins Where the Sidewalk Ends…

Children’s book author, poet and songwriter Shel Silverstein lived in Key West for many years.  While he passed away in 1999, his legacy lives on through some of his most popular works including Where the Sidewalk Ends, A Light in the Attic and The Giving Tree.

In 2017, Hurricane Irma blew over two trees in the front of the home that Silverstein lived in for years. They crushed the front of the house and the home was condemned.

The current owners engaged Scott Hutton of Kanga Construction to completely demolish the home and then rebuild an exact replica.  Goodwin milled 1800sf of building reclaimed Legacy Heart Pine Vertical 3-1/4″ flooring for the restoration of the home.  We also produced the stair treads.  Take a look:

We will be posting more photos of this exciting project as we receive them.  In the meantime, enjoy this very well-articulated story of how this re-build transpired:

Read Story

The Timeless Beauty of Old Growth Longleaf

Chinsegut Hill is a historic home constructed entirely out of old growth longleaf pine.  The longleaf harvested for the construction likely came from the property it was built on.  The entire floor on the ground level needed to be replaced and the Friends of Chinsegut Hill turned to Goodwin to provide replacement flooring. Goodwin milled nearly 2000sf of 3-1/4″ building reclaimed Legacy Vertical Heart Pine for the project.

The original Chinsegut Hill home was built in 1847 by Bird Pearson. By 1852 he had sold the plantation to the Edgerton Family who built the first center section of the home we know today. Chinsegut sits upon what is reported to be the second highest point of land on the peninsula of Florida behind Iron Mountain, home of Bok Tower. Its history is interesting and extensive.

Interestingly, the Legacy Vertical Heart Pine beams that were reclaimed and resawn to mill the floor came from the demolition of the Avondale Mill in Sylacauga, Alabama.  The Avondale Mill was a textile manufacturing facility that operated from the 1890s until the 1980s. In 2011, the massive structure was hit by lightning and burned. As the wings of the building were dismantled, Goodwin purchased the structural heart pine members from the site for re-purposing into flooring.

The floors were installed but never sanded and finished. The Friends of Chinsegut Hill operated the site as a wedding retreat and conference facility but have since ceased operations. Today, the site is being managed by the Tampa Bay History Center and is expected to open to the public for tours by late spring 2020.

Our Marketing Coordinator Jeffrey Forbes recently visited Chinsegut Hill and took photos of the home as it stands now.  We hope to get additional photos once the floor is sanded and finished and Chinsegut Hill is opened to the public.

We Have a Heart for Historic Preservation!

Historic Preservation

Historic preservation is the heart of what we do here at Goodwin.  One of our favorite projects was the award-winning Firestone Building restoration.  Goodwin Company milled the gorgeous River-Recovered® and reclaimed Legacy Vertical Heartpine flooring, some of which surrounds a rectangle of reclaimed pine from the original building. The antique wood was also used to craft an inlay of a fan medallion in the center.

The building includes 4000sq.ft. of office space, a reception area and second floor balcony. The project was recognized by the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation (FTHP) in 2015, receiving an Honorable Mention for Adaptive Reuse.

The building is owned by Phoebe Cade Miles (daughter of the late Dr. James Robert Cade, inventor of Gatorade) who commissioned the restoration.

Firestone Building Restoration

Gainesville, Florida

River-Recovered® and reclaimed Legacy Vertical Heartpine

Back to the Beach!

Goodwin’s River-Recovered®, reclaimed and sustainable woods are often specified for coastal projects.  Our wood is perfect for any beachside residence or commercial space.  Take a look at this gorgeous residence in Key West, Florida.  This contemporary, new construction home features Goodwin’s Pecky Cypress on the ceilings and precision engineered Wild Black Cherry flooring throughout:

When it comes to livable luxury, building design professionals incorporate antique and sustainable wood to achieve a fresh yet warm feel. Are you planning to remodel your home in 2020?  If so, give the antique and sustainable wood experts at Goodwin a call today!

True Character Shines in This Gorgeous LEGACY Heart Pine

This is one of our favorite projects that really showcases our LEGACY Character Heart Pine. The homeowners near Orlando, Florida ordered 1536sf of 3-1/4″ LEGACY Character Heart Pine for their new retreat home. They also wanted two sets of stair treads, one going up to the landing and another leading upstairs.

LEGACY Character Heart Pine is the most rustic flooring that Goodwin mills. Quality installers know there will be some nail holes, slight cracks and checks that will need to be filled and dressed. These features not only give this gorgeous building reclaimed wood “Character”, but they speak volumes about its history and previous life as a structural beam in a 19th century industrial building.

The floor and stair treads were sanded and finished on site by Ric Scovil of Ability Wood Flooring in Orlando, Florida.

Special thank you to the gracious homeowners who said this about their new LEGACY Character Heart Pine flooring and stairs:

“Just a word of praise for your product. We selected LEGACY Character flooring for our new home. We moved into our new home August 2018. The warmth and richness of our flooring adds greatly to the craftsman feel of our Florida home. You are truly an artist with rare wood. Our floors were installed and finished by Ability Floors in Orlando who brought out the best in your wonderful product.” – Larry Cappleman

Photos by Beth M. Green Photography

Taking on a DIY Project? Let Goodwin Help!

Not all of our clients are building design professionals or installers.  We have several clients who take on do-it-yourself (DIY) projects such as installing antique wood flooring and feature walls.  The technical experts at Goodwin are always happy to provide guidance to our DIY clients.  Take a look at this gorgeous River-Recovered® Heart Pine Character flooring Mr. and Mrs. Nate Sutrick installed in their century old home in Milton, Florida:

According to the Sutrick’s, the home originally had a heart pine floor.  When they purchased it, the flooring consisted of plywood nailed to joists.  They searched the United States to find just the right flooring to install into their dream home.  They ended up sourcing their wood flooring from Goodwin after visiting the showroom and experiencing the wood up close.  They ordered 1001sf of 3-1/4″ River-Recovered® Heart Pine Character tongue and groove flooring along with reducers and “T” moldings. The Sutrick’s installed, sanded and finished the flooring themselves knowing that their friends at Goodwin were just a phone call away.

Coincidentally, Milton, Florida is just 2.5 miles from the town of Bagdad, Florida.  Back in 1900, the Bagdad Mill was the single largest economic interest in the state of Florida.  More longleaf lumber left Pensacola Bay for export and domestic sale than any other port in the country.  Today, the site of the Bagdad Mill is a public park.

We enjoy providing guidance to our DIY clients. Special thank you to the Sutrick’s for their very kind words:

“My wife and I purchased a 1920’s house that was in need of some serious TLC. We searched many flooring companies all over the country for flooring that would match the era of our house. On a trip to South Florida we visited the Goodwin Company facility and instantly found the flooring we wanted. The staff at Goodwin Company worked with us to find the flooring that fit our house and our budget – River-Recovered® Heart Pine Character. With the help of the staff at Goodwin Company we were able to install and finish the flooring ourselves. This was our first attempt at installing hard wood flooring and their insight and guidance was second to none. We could not have finished this project without their help.”

The James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art and Legacy Vertical Heart Pine

The 80,000 square foot James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art in St. Petersburg, Florida features a vast collection of art acquired by Tom and Mary James.  The couple, who has always been captivated by the art, wildlife and landscape of the western United States, has collected more than 3,000 pieces over the past five decades. The James Museum houses 400-500 of the most premier works of art from their private collection.

Goodwin partnered with Corey Cathcart of Integrity Floors to provide 300 sq. ft. of 3 ¼” building reclaimed Legacy Vertical Heart Pine during the construction of the James Museum.  He installed this beautiful antique wood on the underside of the gorgeous bridge that crosses over the simulated sandstone canyon that encompasses the museum entrance.  Take a look:

Photos by Beth M. Green Photography

Goodwin was proud to be part of such an exciting project. The James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art is a must see for any art connoisseur!

Learn more about the James Museum and their exhibitions and educational programs.

What is Vertical Grain Heart Pine and Heart Cypress?

We are often asked about our vertical grain heart pine and heart cypress.  Building design professionals and homeowners alike often specify Goodwin’s vertical grain heart pine and heart cypress because of its attractive pinstriping. It also experiences shrink/swell at half the rate of select.

The vertical grain is actually the result of quarter sawing the wood. Quarter sawing is a process that results in what we often refer to as pinstriping grain, which are perpendicular lines running down the full length of the board.

Vertical Grain

While all woods can be quarter sawn, both antique heart pine and heart cypress really display this particular face nicely.  This mostly has to do with the fact that the growth rings in antique wood are very, very tight.  We say that you should expect a minimum of eight growth rings per inch with antique heart pine and you can regularly find 20 growth rings per inch with antique heart cypress.

Vertical Grain

Below are some key attributes of vertical grain heart pine and heart cypress:

  • 100% VERTICAL grain will display no growth rings more than 45 degrees perpendicular to the face of each board. If you look at the end of a piece of vertical grain heart pine flooring you will see no growth rings proud of 45 degrees.
  • Quarter sawing requires larger logs so it produces fewer over all knots. Knots are a result of branching and most of the branching in older trees is at the top.
  • Quarter sawing produces wood that experiences shrink/swell at about half the rate that plain sawn wood does (i.e. select is an example of plain sawn). In historic wood frame homes you will discover that they nearly all have doors, door framing and jambs, windows and window framing crafted of vertical grain heart pine or heart cypress rather than select pieces.  Better builders have always known that shrink/swell in vertical grain heart pine and heart cypress is greatly reduced and have traditionally used it for parts of buildings that open and close.

Vertical grain heart pine and heart cypress takes more time to produce than plain sawn wood.  The tradeoff is that quarter sawn vertical grain heart pine and heart cypress has a much more refined look, which is why it is often found in high end historic homes. For example, it is widely known that prominent mid-nineteenth century New Orleans architect Henry Howard specified nothing but quarter sawn vertical grain heart pine for the homes he designed.

Are you interested in learning more about Goodwin’s vertical grain heart pine and heart cypress? If so, our antique wood experts are ready to discuss how you can incorporate this elegant wood into your home or office.  Give us a call today!

Antique Heart Pine and Heart Cypress – Two Woods That “Work” in Commercial Spaces

Goodwin partners with building design professionals throughout the country on both new construction and remodeled commercial spaces.

Why Goodwin Will Never Be a “Run of the Mill” Manufacturer

Goodwin Company“Run of the mill” is one of those common phrases we often don’t put much thought into as it’s a term used in everyday, casual conversations to describe something that has little or no features that distinguish it from other things that serve the same purpose.

The phrase ‘run of the mill’ originates in the early 1900’s America and was used by factories to describe a commodity that was not graded or checked for impurities. This would result in a product that was not the best nor the worst, but simply average in quality. The expression later developed into the more figurative use around the 1920’s.

After more than four decades in business, Goodwin still refuses to settle for “run of the mill” standards. Architects, designers, and building design professionals especially appreciate the time, quality, and craftsmanship that goes into each and every Goodwin product:

  • We use what is arguably the strictest grading standard in the industry. Our 100% American-made wood is milled with strict grading guidelines to ensure our customers truly enjoy the finest products on the market.
  • Goodwin uses the best and most accurate machinery operated by skilled craftsman who have an eye for quality. In fact, founder George Goodwin is still the company sawyer!
  • Our onsite storage facility ensures that our woods can be perfectly preserved until they are ordered. This means you don’t have to wait for the entire milling process to be complete or the season to be right to enjoy antique wood that looks freshly milled.
  • We even offer proprietary finishes including Diamond 7 which is as strong as diamonds and preserves an antique heart pine floor well beyond that of other finishes.

Additionally, Goodwin’s signature product, River-Recovered® heart pine, is an antique wood with a unique story and quality unlike any other species. We have decades of experience with heart pine, cultivating and milling only the finest cuts of this sunken treasure. Goodwin also supplies a sizable selection of other exceptional woods that are sustainably sourced and held to an equal standard as our heart pine.

There have been many imitators over the years and there are still companies who claim the same standards as Goodwin.  However, the proof is in the quality and craftsmanship, which is why we challenge you to compare Goodwin’s wood side-by-side to any other finished wood in the world and you will clearly see why we are considered the industry gold standard.

Goodwin Company

 

Antique Heart Pine and Adaptive Re-use

Antique Heart Pine and Adaptive Re-use

The 1830s era Pennsylvania barn remodel project continues to receive publicity, praise and accolades.  In addition to milling the heart pine stair treads, Goodwin provided 2200sf of River-Recovered® Heart Pine Character and Old Florida for this adaptive re-use project.

Take a look at this in-depth post detailing the remodel:

Read article

Are you working on a remodel or adaptive re-use project?  If so, give us a call. Our antique wood experts will be happy to help you creatively incorporate River-Recovered and/or reclaimed heart pine and/or heart cypress into your design.

Photos by: Dan Williams Photography