Reclaiming virgin pine from monumental grain elevators:
Old Globe's wood comes from virgin forests, which means that the trees were able to grow to full maturity without any disturbance. The grain is tighter, the knots are more beautiful, the trees are taller; it’s just a whole different kind of wood.
When erected in 1887, the Globe Elevators were the largest terminal elevators in the world. They contain one of the greatest supply of old growth virgin pine. Old Globe's mission: Reclaim this resource for generations to come.
Giving the world a method to create reliable and sustainable projects with unmatched consistency using wood available from the stock of 3.3 Million board-feet is one of their main goals.
Their wood contains historic characteristics not found in modern lumber:
Starting in 1885, the Globe Elevator began construction using wood from the Old Growth forests. Nearly 2500 men worked for 2 years until it was erected in 1887 and earned the title of world’s largest terminal elevator. Within the same decade, other architectural feats such as the Washington Monument, the Eiffel Tower, and the Chicago World Fair took place. Acoustic Remedy Projects with Old Globe Wood.
When they were first harvested in the 1830’s, the Old Growth forests of northern Minnesota and Wisconsin were home to 125-250 year old trees, such as our white pine. With the promising future of the grain industry, grain elevators quickly began popping up in the Twin Ports. By the 1880’s, Duluth and Superior were known nationally as “Elevator Row”.
With a capacity of over 3 million bushels, Old Globe provided tens of millions of people with food in America and overseas. The elevator was decommissioned in 1988. Grain from throughout the Midwest was brought to the Globe Elevators by rail, then loaded onto cargo ships for transport through the Great Lakes, the St. Lawrence Seaway, and beyond. It contains some 3.3 million board feet of wood - mostly Eastern White Pine - as well as hundreds of tons of Real Wrought Iron and other antique hardware.
Old Globe Wood Company LLC was created to dismantle antique grain elevators and save the old-growth wood that might otherwise end up in a landfill world wide. Of course, everything that Old Globe sells is environmentally friendly. Old Globe products qualify for LEED points and other green certification.
Many wooden grain elevators were lost to fire during their operation. Of those that survived, most have been demolished or burned to enable redevelopment. Old Globe rescues antique granary timbers, dimensional lumber, and wrought iron. They are proud to contribute to the conservation of our planet's natural resources, we also love the richness and character of this wood.
Today, products from the Old Globe Wood Company grace luxury homes, restaurants, hotels and convention centers. Their customers include designers, contractors, architects, home owners, artists, and custom blacksmiths.
We've had some fun and some unique challenges working with this wood. For starters the location to obtain the wood is several hundred miles away and is for all practical purposes unattended. A few phone calls and emails later, we arranged a visit in March 2020. In addition, the wood is reclaimed so it comes with features such as surface staining, knots, thickness variations, etc. that make building high end humidors an adventure.
The Eastern White Pine used in the grain elevators was cut from virgin forests in Wisconsin and Minnesota in the mid to late 1800s. These woods were anywhere from 125-250 years old when harvested and when erected in 1887, the Globe Elevators were the largest terminal elevators in the world. They contain one of the greatest supply of old growth virgin pine. Old Globe has slowly began dissecting these large structures and providing their customers with sustainably reclaimed wood that is unique and a whole different kind of wood.
So far we've created a ClimaCab Grand with a beautiful antique colored stain from Woodwright's Ohio Collection called Seely. This particular ClimaCab made its way from Wisconsin to Brooklyn, NY to find its new home in a studio in a flat adjacent to the East River and the Statue of Liberty. Below are a few photos of this project at various stages of completion.
In December 2020, we created several versions of our ClimaCase and ClimaStand, including a horizontal hanging version of the ClimaCase that will house a BB King owned and signed Gibson. The first ones out of the shop included our new Horizontal ClimaCase, which utilizes a String Swing neck hook and some custom made bout rest blocks that are angled perfectly towards one another to cradle a variety of lower bouts on a wide range of instruments. We also made a standard rectangle shaped ClimaCase and several ClimaStands.
These particular versions feature two different exterior surfaces. The first is "in the rough", which preserves all of the rustic surfaces that were present as the wood was extracted from the elevators and with little to no surface preparation on our end. The interior is planed and hand sanded to expose the underlying wood while still preserving the knots and nail holes. It's stained with the Woodwright brand Seely stain to provide a nice antique look.
The second exterior surface is the entire ClimaCase or ClimaStand being made from wood which is planed, hand sanded, and finished in Seely. This is identical to the ClimaCab Grand pictured above and the interior of the "in the rough" versions.