As the logging industry in Humboldt County boomed and willing workers came in droves for a share of the prize, lumber companies built mills and railroads deep into the heart of the redwood forests. Logging camps became townsites and homes for workers and their families.
Work was hard and hours were long for everyone at the logging camps. Woodsmen at Falk’s Claim worked 72-hour weeks, at 14 cents per hour; women in the cookhouse provided meals three times per day and worked 15-hour days. Falk’s Camp also had rail service, a blacksmith shop, and a school for the children of the workers.
Women living in logging camps had to be industrious and resourceful, maintaining homesteads and raising children with limited resources; though many families grew and flourished around the logging industry.
Workers at logging camp cookhouses supplied meals three times per day for up to one hundred men or sometimes more! Preparing food and cleaning was immense work, but was one of the only opportunities for women to earn money in logging camps.
Maggie Biord, (second from right,top row) was head cook at the cookhouse in Falk and famous for her formidable cooking skills and her fiery temper. Once, when the general store manager sent rancid butter for Maggie's delivery she telephoned the store and screamed,
"Matt, you'd better get out on those tracks 'cause that butter you sent up here was so damn rotten it just started walkin' back down the hill!"