Historic Markers Across Alabama

The Horseshoe Lumber Company / River Falls Power Company

Marker ID:  
Location: at the intersection of U.S. 84 and Red Level Road (County Route 107), River Falls, Alabama
County: Covington
Coordinates: N 31° 20.943    W 086° 31.929
  31.34905    -86.53215
Waymark: None


The Horseshoe Lumber Company

E.L. More, president of the A&F Division of the L&N Railroad, arrived in River Falls from Nashville in 1897 to spearhead the construction of a branch line of the L&N. Recognizing a business opportunity in the large quantity of virgin longleaf pine timberland in the area, he purchased a half-interest in a small mill located on Buck Creek near River Falls. He was encouraged by his long-time friend and mentor Major E.C. Lewis, president of the NC & STL Railroad and L&N board member. From this beginning until its closure following the disastrous flood of 1929, the Horse Shoe Lumber Company along the river and near this marker was one of the largest, most modern sawmills of its time. The mill operated an extensive logging rail system using as many as eight locomotives over the years. In addition to More, key mill personnel included his long-time associate Cyrus A. O'Neal as company vice president, Henry Stanley as company secretary, and E.W. Arwood as private secretary to Mr. More. Gus Henderson of Andalusia was mill superintendent. John Miles Cooper, also of Andalusia, served as woods foreman.

River Falls Power Company

E.L. More organized the River Falls Power Company in 1920 to provide a grid system to furnish electricity to nine counties along the FL/AL state line. Leslie Cheek of Nashville joined More and Cyrus A. O'Neal in providing the start-up capital. More became the company's president and O'Neal its vice-president, while Henry Stanley served as secretary. The arrival of electricity served as an invitation to industry to locate in the area and More's own Horse Shoe Lumber Company was one of the earliest customers. More constructed a modern all-electric sawmill on the same site where his old mill had burned in 1924. The power was supplied by the company's Gantt and Point "A" dams built upstream on the Conecuh River in 1924 and 1926, respectively. To ensure uninterrupted electrical service, a large auxiliary steam plant was added to the system in River Falls. A third dam up the Patsalgi was envisioned for the future by the company, but those plans were abandoned after the 1929 flood.

Erected 2010 by Covington Historical Society, Inc. and the Alabama Historical Association.

End of The Horseshoe Lumber Company / River Falls Power Company