WEST JEFFERSON — Twelve years after acquiring the property, Carolina Timberworks broke ground on its plot at Beaver Creek Industrial Park, as witnessed by a crowd of 40 and assisted by Ashe County Commissioners May 15.
Carolina Timberworks specializes in timber framing, an age-old technique of constructing buildings with only wooden beams — no nails or screws.
“It’s actually a 2,000-year-old craft that involves joining big posts and big beams with wooden pegs,” Bookkeeper and co-owner Gesche Morley said at the groundbreaking ceremony. “For example, Notre Dame’s cathedral roof was timber-framed, and it lasted almost 800 years before it burned in a tragic fire last month.”
Carolina Timberworks’ portfolio stretches from Florida, up the east coast to New York, and the company has been headquartered in Boone since its founding in 2004, according to its website.
“Twelve years ago, Carolina Timberworks purchased the land we’re standing on with every intention of building a manufacturing facility,” Morley said. “Then the Great Recession hit, and our focus shifted from growth to simply being able to keep the doors open.”
Since the recession of 2008, the company endured a long, slow recovery, according to Morley — up to the point of the May 15 groundbreaking ceremony, which was attended by Ashe County commissioners Paula Perry and Larry Dix.
“This is a good day for Ashe County,” Dix said. “It is businesses like Carolina Timberworks that fuel the economy and help fuel the local economic development that will be shared by all of our citizens — this is a win-win situation, and we are so glad to have you, and look forward to working with you.”
Perry noted the long time coming for the groundbreaking ceremony.
“We want to wish them the very best, because Ashe County is the very best,” Perry said.
With ceremonial gold shovels in hand, founders Gesche and Eric Morley, the commissioners and architect David Patrick Moses broke ground on Carolina Timberworks’ 3.6-acre parcel. The Morleys previously said they plan to finish and move into their timber-framed headquarters building and begin business operations in Ashe County by the end of December.
For more information about Carolina Timberworks, or the process of timber framing, go online to https://www.carolinatimberworks.com/.