By Bethany Byrd
On August 14, 2014 the Lindsey Wagon was moved to its new home inside of the 1st National Bank building where it will be showcased as a part of the upcoming Laurel Main Street Welcome Center.
Thank you to Jim & Mallory Rasberry for providing space to house this historical treasure as well as to the Laurel Fire Dept. Central Station for tackling the huge job of moving it into its new place of honor.
History of the Lindsey Wagon
Built by Mississippi lumberman John Lindsey to haul logs to his sawmills, the wagons worked so well, he marketed them and Lindsey Log Wagon Company of Laurel, Miss., was born. Lindsey patented his invention in 1899. He and his brother, S.W. Lindsey, ran the successful business. By 1901, it was the biggest single employer in the state, with 120 people. They even exported wagons to Central America, where logging was big business as it was in Mississippi.
Even today, people in Laurel hold the Lindsey Eight Wheel Log Wagon and the Lindsey family in high esteem.
Eight wheels hauled heavy loads over soft ground better than four, which tended to bog down. Though designed to be pulled by up to twelve teams of oxen, teams of six or eight mules or horses were also used. Later, some of the wagons were modified and hooked to bulldozers.
Laurel Machine & Foundry Company was established as a manufacturer and supplier of metal parts for the Lindsey eight-wheel wagon factory.
The U.S. military in France also used Lindsey log wagons during World War I, for hauling heavy armor and equipment. After the Armistice, the company received an Award of Merit from the U.S. War Department for “distinguished service; the loyalty, energy and efficiency in the performance of war work by which Lindsey Wagon Company aided materially in obtaining victory for the arms of the United States of America.
What’s coming next
Soon, you’ll be able to view the Lindsey Wagon in it’s new home! Watch for updates on the LMS Facebook page to find out about the opening of the new Welcome Center and other Downtown Laurel news!