The plant of the J. F. Ball & Bro. Lumber Company, Limited, Ball, La., is operated under the name of the Sweet Home Lumber Company. It is under the management of J. W. Ball, who resides at Pineville, La., who is assisted by a cousin of the same name, residing in the Ball homestead.
Timber operations under Woods Foreman John S. Rice give employment to forty men; sixty-four oxen; four Bender slip-tongue carts; eight 8-wheel Lindsay and 4-wheel wagons. The logs are loaded on to the cars by a McGiffert steam log loader. An average of 75,000 feet of logs are loaded each day and a record of 110,000 feet in ten hours has been made. One camp is maintained. The timber holdings of the Sweet Home Lumber Company consist of 12,000 acres, equivalent to 125,000,000 feet, closely adjoining the tract of the Pollock plant.
The main line of the railway is laid with twelve miles of 35-pound steel, and there are four miles of spurs. Thirty-two skeleton log cars are used and two locomotives -- a 27 and a 37 ton Shay. The logs are stored in a pond at the mill which has a capacity of 1,000,000 feet, which is supplied by rainwater. The total number of employees is 100.
The mill building is 38x180 feet in size, with an addition for the filing room 20x50 feet. The equipment consists of a circular mill with 66-inch saw and 40-inch top saw, with twin engine feed, has capacity of 75,000 feet and cuts 20,000,000 feet annually. The carriage is a Filer & Stowell, 3-block, with trailer at each end, capable of handling timbers sixty feet in length. The edger is 60-inch, carrying five saws, and the trimmer will handle lumber thirty-two feet long and has fifteen saws. The engine is a Houston, Stanwood & Gamble 20x24 and is supplied with steam from five boilers, four of which are 54x14, and one 72x18, made by Casey & Hedges and with dutch ovens, self feed, in brick settings. An electric light plant with capacity of 700 lights is installed.
In addition to the machinery mentioned a timber sizer is installed at the end of the saw mill to take care of the side material cut from timbers. It is a Berlin, 10x30 in size.
The population of Ball is 700, and in addition to the office, store and residences it has a good school, employing three teachers, and a Union church.