GRAY and SONS SAWMILL
& SUPPLY LLC
Gray's Sawmill was founded in 1936 by A.P. Gray who started hewing railroad cross ties by hand with a broad ax. Gray eventually purchased a small mill and started manufacturing railroad cross ties, switch ties, and rough lumber for barn and corral building.
One of A.P. Gray's sons, A.M. Gray, took over the sawmill in 1951 and continued supplying the railroad with ties and found a good market for hardwoods in the oil field. A.M.'s reputation for accurate lumber soon spread as he was sought by the furniture industry for red and white oaks and other Southern hardwoods. A.M. continued to produce hardwood lumber until 1981, when he passed the sawmill to his youngest son, Bryant E. Gray.
Bryant capitalized on the furniture industry making it the primary product of the sawmill. Diversification proved to be beneficial when the oil industry fell in the early 80's. Bryant found a use for by-products of furniture lumber; lumber that would not make furniture grade could be sold to pallet companies for shipping uses.
B. Chad and Lori Gray bought the sawmill and took over operations in 2007. Chad found markets for wood waste, excess slabs and sawdust, and started to grind the slabs and sell them to Weyerhaeuser along with the sawdust for recycling. Other companies regrind the chips and sawdust for use in the oil field to stop leaks during drilling for oil.
The Gray's have always prided themselves for being the headsaw operators, as well as swaging and sharpening their own saw. Tricks of the trade and knowledge gained from years of experience has been passed from generation to generation.
A fifth generation is "in training" with the hope of passing along the experience and knowledge the founding Gray's spent years perfecting.