It all began with
E. Neilson Beard, Jr., who started his lumber career as a
lad of 20. His first job was in 1919 with the Darnell-Love
Lumber Company, Leland, MS. In 1920, he became manager of
the sales office in Chicago of the Turner-Farber-Love Company
of Memphis, TN, and remained in this capacity until 1924.
From 1925 to 1930, he was vice president of the Canse-Beard
Plywood Company in Memphis, TN, and then moved to North Carolina
as a representative of the Wilson Lumber Co., of Perry, FL.
In the blackest year of the Depression, 1932, Neil Beard braved
all odds and opened his own wholesale business, the E.N. Beard
Lumber Company, to serve the North Carolina and Virginia territory.
He was very much influenced by Mr. Tom Broyhill, founder of
Broyhill Furniture, and Mr. Bill Bassett of Bassett to do
The furniture industry moved from the Grad Rapids, MI, area
to a more centralized area of the country because North Carolina
and Virginia had timber and the German and Scottish people
who had settled here loved to work with wood. At that time,
three other wholesale lumbermen moved to North Carolina: Mr.
Tom Bledsoe, Brown-Bledsoe Lumber Co.; Mr. Wiley Sholar, Sholar
Lumber Co.; and Mr. Russell Simmonds, Simmonds Lumber Co.
You may say these four were the original wholesale lumber
merchants who came to North Carolina.
In 1956, Thomas "Tom" Beard entered the business
with his father after serving in the Army Finance Corps in
France. In 1968, he persuaded his father to help him start
what is now Piedmont Hardwood Dry Kiln Co. to serve the furniture
and millwork people both domestically as well as shipping
to foreign markets.
Later the E.N. Beard Lumber Co. was purchased by Tom Beard,
Fred Sievers and Henry Sienkiewicz and the name was slightly
changed to E.N. Beard Hardwood Lumber, Inc., and was built
to one of the finest wholesale hardwood firms in America.
Henry Sienkiewicz passed away in 1990 and Fred Sievers retired
due to poor health in 1996 bringing John Beard from E.N. Beard's
Kentucky office to help run the business along with David
Wilson with 16 years experience with the company.
In 1998, John Beard was named president of the company and
David Wilson executive vice president. Tom Beard serves as
chief executive officer and chairman of the board. Pete Green
works in our Tennessee office buying and selling lumber. Since
2002, Derick Shular, with a background in international business,
has managed sales to our many export markets around the world.
Aaron Fouts manages our green purchases for our lumber yard