Timber Times Lessons

Purpose: Students will practice computation of math facts, problem solving, and math apprlications while participating in a thematic unit on local history.

Standards Addressed: 3.5 Students demonstrate basic economic reasoning skills and an understanding of the economy of the local region.1. Describe the ways in which local producers have used and are using natural resources, human resources, and capital resources to produce goods and services in the past and the present. 2. Understand that some goods are made locally, some elsewhere in the United States, and some abroad. 3. Understand that individual economic choices involve trade-offs and the evaluation of benefits and costs.

Materials: Copies of the multiplication or time and money lessons for each student or pair of students.

Procedure: Students will read the Timber Times pages on this website, and will complete these lessons as part of a practical discussion of the effects of mathematical variables which determine profitability of mountain lumber interests.


Timber Times Multiplication


 1.. A pack mule could carry five bags of cornmeal to the timber camps. If each bag held 50 pounds, how may pounds would the mule be carrying? _____________________________________________________________________________________

2. If a circular saw could cut four logs per hour into board lumber, how many logs could be cut in an eight hour day? _____________________________________________________________________________

3. Teams of oxen and horses were used to pull the heavy logs to the sawmills. If a team could haul three logs on each trip, how many logs could they haul in six trips? _____________________________________________________________________________________

 4. In 1854, about 200 buildings in Los Angeles were built with lumber from the San Bernardino Mountains. If it took an average of seven trees to make each building, about how many trees were cut down for Los Angeles in 1854? _______________________________________________________________________

5. Lumber camps were busy places. If there were nine wagons a day going down Waterman Canyon Road with lumber, and four horses pulled each wagon, how many horses were used? _____________________________________________________________________________________

6. Each day at lunch the sawmill cooks served meals to 25 hungry men. If each man were served three buttermilk biscuits with their lunch, how many biscuits would the cooks have to plan on cooking? _____________________________________________________________________________________

7. Lumberjacks worked in teams with long two-man saws. If 18 teams were cutting trees at one time, how many lumberjacks would that be? _______________________________________________________________

8. The Brookings mill built a railroad along the rim of the mountain to haul logs to their sawmill. If the tracks were built at a rate of 60 feet per day, how many feet of track would be laid in seven work days? _____________________________________________________________________________________

9. Horses worked hard at the sawmills, hauling logs and pulling wagons loaded with lumber. If each horse ate 15 pounds of hay each day, how much hay per week would each horse need? _____________________________________________________________________________________

10. Orange crates were needed in the valley to pack fruit for the growing citrus industry. Each crate required twelve board feet of lumber. How many feet of lumber would it tale to build five orange crates? _____________________________________________________________________________________

Bonus Questions

How many feet of lumber to build 50 orange crates?_______________500 orange crates?______________


Timber Times

"Time and Money"

1. If workers at a sawmill start their day at 7:00 a.m. and end their shift at 4:00 p.m., how many hours have they worked?___________________________________________________________________________

2. Nellie Belle, the camp cook, started serving supper at 4:30 and finished up at 6:45. How long did she "scoop out the vittles?"_________________________________________________________________________

3. Pete the blacksmith worked all day repairing a broken part from the sawmill. He started at 8:30 and finally was done at 3:00. How long did it take to fix the part?


4. Lorna May and Billy Bob went square dancing in Blue Jay. If they started dancing at 7:30 p.m. and finished at 11:15 p.m., how long were the couple kicking up their heels?


5. It took and experienced teamster and his four-horse team to bring lumber down the mountain. If he left the sawmill at 10:45 a.m., what time could the teamster expect to be down at the box factory?


6. The Mountain Turnpike Company operated a toll road and charged $2.00 for wagons, $0.50 for horses, $0.05 cents for sheep, and $0.25 for each pack animal. If Burt and Gus were driving a two-horse wagon, filled with 5 sheep how much would they be charged?


7. What if Burt and Gus also had two pack mules tied to the back?


8. Clarence went into town and bought some new clothes. He spent $ 3.25 for a shirt, $4.55 for a pair of jeans, $9.99 for work boots, and $8.50 for a hat. How much did Clarence spend?


9. Mormon settlers were called back to Salt Lake City in 1857 by leader Brigham Young, causing Mormon sawmill owners to quickly sell their land. Crisman and Hunt tried to sell their claims for $12,000.00, but only got $2,500.00. How much money did they lose?


10. The Salamander Mill was sold in two parts, one to Eames and Dickson for $2,867.00 and the other to Bachman Mercantile for $2,669.00. How much more did Eames and Dickson pay for their part?


Bonus Question

Leroy, a boy from Blue Jay was hired to feed and water the camp's horses. It took about 10 minutes to take care of one animal. At that rate, how many horses could Leroy care for between 3:00 and 5:00 in the afternoon? _____________________________________



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