H. H. Wheless, of Alden Bridge, La., is and has been for over a decade one of the yellow pine stalwarts of the southwest. He is careful, conservative and yet progressive in his business; a convincing man in matters which meet his interest and to which he may have given investigation, and a man who has taken his position in the business world by slow and sure steps -- always forward -- never backward.
Mr. Wheless is easily the dean of the administrative cabinet and his advice and consideration are much sought after in all matters of weighty business which come to that varied business association.
Mr. Wheless has been a prominent figure at nearly all the meetings of the some time Southern Lumber Manufacturers’ Association -- now the Yellow Pine Manufacturers’ Association -- since the organization of that body, and in matters of organization his advice has always been ready when called for and willingly received.
H. H. Wheless was born in Nashville, Tenn., November 21, 1854. His father, Wesley Wheless, was an interested partner in the cotton firm of Hewitt, Norton & Co., of New Orleans, La., and he was the managing partner of their branch house in Liverpool, England.
Three years after young Wheless -- the subject of this sketch -- was born the family moved to Liverpool, where, when he was 6 years old, his father died. The mother moved back to Nashville and in 1872 married Judge E. H. English, chief justice of the state of Arkansas, and the family home was moved to Little Rock, that state.
Young Wheless went to school up to the age of 14 and then went into the cotton business in Nashville, where he stayed for eight or nine years. In 1879 he came to Arkansas and was for some years in the cotton business in Little Rock, and after that was connected with a railroad in Hempstead county, Arkansas.
In 1889 Mr. Wheless, in company with F. T. Whited, went into the retail lumber business at Shreveport, La. Out of that retail business grew a wholesale business in lumber, and a final broadening out of the efforts of the partnership; purchase of timber lands near Alden Bridge, La.; the building of a mill near that point; and the incorporation, in 1894, of Whited & Wheless, Limited.
During the last thirteen years Whited & Wheless, Limited, have marketed from Alden Bridge an average of 20,000,000 feet of lumber annually.
During these years Mr. Wheless has made a close study of practical forestry and may yet be induced to put his theories into practical operation.
He has kept his investments entirely in the lumber field and is at present vice president of Whited & Wheless, Limited, and a director in the company; president and director in the Dixie Lumber Company, of St. Louis, Mo.; stockholder in and director of the Allen Manufacturing Company, Shreveport, La.; secretary and director of the Black Lake Lumber Company, Campti, La., and vice president and director of the Star & Crescent Lumber Company, of Shreveport, La.