George Ryan opened his saw mill in 1883 along with E.T. Everett and W.J. Madden. The mill was about 1.5 miles north of the Sounder Station in today's downtown Sumner.
The company owned 5000 acres of forest.
A Sandborn Fire map from 1892 shows the mills footprint and also tells us that the boilers were fed by scrap wood, lighting was provided by oil lamps, company watchman looked over the facility 24 hours a day and the mill was connected to the city water system.
The mill had 30 employees at that time.
In an advertisement in an 1890 edition of the Sumner Herald, Ryan assures prospective customers that the mill has the latest facilities for manufacturing all kinds of building materials.
Most of what the mill processed was fir and cedar. It produced regular lumber, hop boxes, fruit crates, shingles and wood water pipe. A couple of pieces of the wood water pipe are on display at the museum.
Most of the wood used to build the 885 Victorian farmhouse portion of the Ryan House museum came fron Ryan's mill.
The company built a 2 mile rood between the mill and Sumner out of planks. Each plank was 4 x 12 inches and 16 feet long. Road
The mill was destroyed by fire in the mid 1890s.
Ryan Logging camp, early 1880s, Sumner Historical Society
Planning Mill & platform, early 1880s, Sumner Historical Society
Overall view of the mill, early 1880s, Sumner Historical Society
1892 Sandborn Fire map, Library of Congress and Sumner Historical Society
Sumner Herald, 1890, Sumner Historical Society
Note that the County Road (near the bottom) is marked as a planked Road
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An ox yoke from a Ryan bull master and oxen team is on display at the museum