Joe Boltz worked with the old Pope & Talbot mill in Midway for 27 years before it went out of business. Having grown up in Greenwood, he’s seen first hand the boom and bust of the mill in the community. As the newest incarnation of the mill, Vaagen Fibre Canada, comes up on its five year anniversary in Midway, he said the mill really made a difference in a community that was set to decline.
“[The mill closing] turned everything into a ghost town. It shut down not just the mill, but the loggers, everything,” Boltz said. “The only thing that went on when the mill was shut down is the government had projects … otherwise it was pretty quite when the lumber industry went for a downswing.”