Former site of Allen’s Mill to see new Sawmill Operation

The former site of Allen’s Mill will be the new home to a sawmill operated by a Florida-based company, Spencer Forest Products LLC. The former mill site was recently purchased by that company and they hope to have the mill in operation by late 2022. The listing price for the property was $1,250,000.

Rollie Dawson, a development team member, told the Forks Forum that moving forward the company hopes to be a good neighbor and use as much of the local workforce and resources as possible as the mill takes shape. Dawson also shared that the company hopes to hold a job fair in early March with the location yet to be named.

The project manager for the mill, Phil Johnson, was in Forks Monday and shared that the mill may potentially employ about 100 people if the mill runs two shifts. “These will be above standard wage jobs, with benefits,” Johnson said.

“We have been looking for quite some time for a suitable site to build this new mill, and we found it,” Johnson added.

Johnson said at this time the plan is for the mill to produce lumber products and most likely not include the chipper/trucking activity of the former Allen’s Mill.

“We would also like to welcome back former employees if they are interested in a job, come see us,” Johnson said.

Johnson will be spending a lot of time in Forks over the next few months and is even contemplating a move here as he oversees the arrival of the mill equipment.

Site History

LLOYD ALLEN started in the logging business in Oregon in 1937, just out of high school he began delivering fir to Scappoose. He was eventually attracted to the Olympic Peninsula by the abundant supply of hemlock.

Eventually, Allen moved his logging operation to Quinault and later to the Burn area on the West End after the big Forks Fire of 1951. Allen’s Mill had been at its Hoh River area location since 1955, starting out as strictly a logging operation.

In 1958 the veneer building was added and reload and sorting of logs began in 1964. In 1969 the sawmill operations were started.

During the 1960s the mill mainly used two logging companies, Koidahl Logging and Spoelstra Bros. Logging. During that time, timber processed in the mill was purchased from state sales.

In 1969 five million board feet of timber went through the mill. At that time the mill employed 76 people. One of the great features of the mill operation was nothing went to waste right down to the smallest wood chip, it had a purpose.

Lloyd Allen passed away in July 2012.

In a conversation with Gerry Lane, General Manager at Allen Logging Company, in June of 2015 Lane stated, “The biggest issue is the Forest Service and DNR programs are failing to meet demand.”

At the time of the mill closing in 2015, Allen’s employed 45 people, including mill workers, watchmen and truck drivers.

Over the years Allen Logging and Mill provided a substantial payroll to the community. In addition to providing jobs, Allen’s had been a supporter of many community events including the annual Scholarship Auction.

The former mill also played a key role in the Forks Chamber of Commerce Logging and Mill tours. Over the years, the tours have helped educate visitors to our area on the real story of logging.

Real estate broker for Keller Williams Olympic/Forks, Rachel Breed, announced on Facebook on Saturday that she had sold the ‘landmark’ property.