MANITOWOC, WI - More than two million board feet of  northern Hemlock wood is getting a new lease on life as custom furniture and architectural millwork, after serving 100 years as a factory floor.

The 750,000- quare feet of flooring was 6 inches thick, with 2" x 6" hemlock boards butted together and standing on end. The underside served as the ceiling for the level below, with a century-old coat of non-lead based paint adding to its distinct reclaimed character.

Niagara Worldwide is reclaiming the wood, and furniture makers have already started working with it. Center in St. Louis has commisioned a set of pub tables, with a clear finish to preserve the patina and a glass top to showcase the boards like museum pieces—or to make them easier to clean.

In addition to the old-growth grain of the wood and the unique coloration, the reclaimed wood is prized for the stories in each of its scars.

“The history of the material is very important to my customers,” says Jim Moriarity, Project Manager for Niagara Worldwide. “The old wood is beautiful and the stories about where it came from and how it was used add a whole new level of interest.”

Newell Rubermaid manufactured cookware and bakeware products on the factory floor until 2003 and Niaraga Worldwide began redeveloping the site in 2006.

MANITOWOC, WI - More than two million board feet of  northern Hemlock wood is getting a new lease on life as custom furniture and architectural millwork, after serving 100 years as a factory floor.

The 750,000 square-foot flooring was six inches thick, with 2"x6" hemlock boards butted together and standing on end. The underside served as the ceiling for the level below, with a century-old coat of non-lead based paint adding to its distinct reclaimed character.

Niagara Worldwide is reclaiming the wood, and furniture makers have already started working with it. Center in St. Louis has commisioned a set of pub tables, with a clear finish to preserve the patina and a glass top to showcase the boards like museum pieces—or to make them easier to clean.

In addition to the old-growth grain of the wood and the unique coloration, the reclaimed wood is prized for the stories in each of its scars.

“The history of the material is very important to my customers,” says Jim Moriarity, Project Manager for Niagara Worldwide. “The old wood is beautiful and the stories about where it came from and how it was used add a whole new level of interest.”

Newell Rubermaid manufactured cookware and bakeware products on the factory floor until 2003 and Niaraga Worldwide began redeveloping the site in 2006.

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