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      The Quincy Lumber Company made a “ten strike” when it secured the services of Charles E. Shoptaw as mill foreman, for he is a veteran mill and lumberman and is intimately familiar with every phase of the technical end of the business, while his administrative ability is also apparent in the smooth manner in which the mill operates under his supervision.  Mr. Shoptaw was born in Logan County, Arkansas, January 16, 1875, a son of Matthew P. and Sarah Shoptaw.  His father was a native of Kentucky and went to Arkansas to engage in the sawmill business.  Of the nine children who were born to him and his wife, Charles E. is the sixth in order of birth.  Three are living in California, Charles E., J. T., who is employed in the head office of the Bank of Italy in San Francisco; and Bessie, the wife of Mr. Hillbinger, a restaurateur of San Francisco.  The father died in Sallisaw, Oklahoma, at the age of eighty-three years, and the mother in Fort Smith, Arkansas, at the age of forty-nine years.

      Charles E. Shoptaw received but meager educational advantages as he was compelled to walk seven miles to school.  When he was fourteen years of age his mother died, after which he left home and has made his own way from that time.  Going to Anahuac, Texas, he went to work for the Cummings Lumber Company, in its hardwood lumber mill.  Already he had some sawmill experience, having as a boy worked with his father in the latter’s small sawmill at Paris, Logan County, Arkansas.  They often worked at night, when the boy would hold a lantern to enable his father to do his work as a sawyer.  During the years since then Mr. Shoptaw has worked in every capacity about lumber camps and sawmills, from cleanup boy to manager.  From Anahuac, Texas, he went to Oakdale, Allen Parish, Louisiana, but later decided to try his luck on the Pacific coast.  Going to Chiloquin, Oregon, he worked for the E. A. Blocklinger Company until its mill was destroyed by fire, in 1906, when he went to the Southern Oregon Lumber Company.  Later he went to Alturas, Modoc County, California, and entered the employ of the Pickering Lumber Company as a sawyer, remaining there until 1929, when he came to Quincy as mill foreman for the Quincy Lumber Company.  There are twenty-five men employed in this mill, which has a daily capacity of eighty-five thousand feet of lumber, and it is the principal industry at Quincy.

      In 1899, at Wallisville, Chambers County, Texas, Mr. Shoptaw was united in marriage to Miss Ethel Welker, a native of Roanoke, Indiana, and they are the parents of five children:  Emma Laura, who is the wife of O. L. Brain, a carpenter in Lake Charles, Louisiana, and they have three children; R. L., an employee of the Forest Lumber Company at Chiloquin, Oregon, who married Miss Bernice Dill and they are the parents of two children; J. A., who operates the resaw at the Quincy mill; A. V., in high school at Quincy, and Bobbie C., at home.  Mr. Shoptaw is a member of the Knights of Pythias and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows at Oakdale, Louisiana.  He adheres to the Presbyterian Church and gives generously to worthy benevolent causes.  Politically, he maintains an independent attitude, supporting the candidates who in his judgment will do the most for the public welfare.  Though comparatively a newcomer to Quincy, he has formed a wide acquaintance and his sterling character has gained for him the genuine respect of the community.  He is essentially a self-made man and his steady advancement in his line of work has been due to his ability and faithfulness in the discharge of every duty, through which he has won and retained the confidence of his employers.




Transcribed by Gerald Iaquinta.

Source: Wooldridge, J.W.Major History of Sacramento Valley California, Vol. 3 Pages 149-150. Pioneer Historical Publishing Co. Chicago 1931.

© 2010  Gerald Iaquinta.



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