The death of the lumbering industry in the late 1800s helped bring about the birth of the sugarbeet industry to the Saginaw Valley’s farming and food-processing economies.

After loggers had cleared the pine forests in the area, the land was virtually unusable due to the massive expanse of tree stumps left behind. State and local leaders were searching for a substitute for the jobs and money generated by now-departed lumber barons. A solution was needed that could be replenished each year, bringing a stabilizing influence on the economic base of the region.

Sources of information: “The Sugar Tramp” (1954) by Dan Gutleben; The Newsbeet (Fall 2006) by Michigan Sugar Company; Pioneer News, Volume 46, Nos. 2 & 3 (1991) by Michigan Sugar Company.