In 1855 J.D. Collins began timber operations in Pennsylvania. The lands he acquired and additional ones purchased since have become known as the Collins Pennsylvania Forest. The Collins Company is still family owned; over the years the family bought forests that became the Collins Almanor Forest in northeastern California and the Collins Lakeview Forest in southern Oregon. Kane Hardwoods, a division of the Collins Company, manages the 124,000 acre Collins Pennsylvania Forest and produces lumber from it.
The Collins forests have all been managed for sustained yield, selective harvest, and forest health since the early 1940's. These are self-sustaining multi-aged forests of many species, not tree farms. All the forests are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council. The wood harvested from these forests is known as CollinsWood.
In 1998, the Collins Companies established a contest for the best furniture or wood product, built of CollinsWood. Researching forest management and sources of sustainably harvested wood, I found the Forest Stewardship Council, Kane Hardwoods, and the CollinsWood contest just weeks before the contest deadline. In a pivotal stroke of good fortune, I was able to order wood, build a rocking chair, and win the contest. We won the 1998 CollinsWood Award for the best piece of furniture priced over $300 built of CollinsWood and were featured and cited in many publications.
The greatest benefit, however, has been our relationship with Kane Hardwoods. All of our cherry and maple come from Kane. The wood has been exceptional; the company inspiring.
For more information on Kane Hardwoods, CollinsWood, and the CollinsWood Contest, (go to www.collinswood.com).