In 1918 R. C. Goodwyn started in the lumber business in Chesterfield County near Drewrys Bluff with his two brothers. One of the brothers withdrew his interest from the business in 1921 leaving only A. H. Goodwyn and R. C. Goodwyn who purchased his one third interest for about $150.00. These two brothers operated a steam sawmill from tract to tract manufacturing lumber and shipping wholesale to lumber yards in a radius of about 50 miles.
Between 1918 and 1921 all lumber was hauled from the sawmill to Richmond lumber yards or to railroad siding at Drewrys Bluff by mules and wagon. The last of 1921 they purchased their first truck, a T-Model Ford, costing approximately $375.00.
In 1925 a large tract of timber was purchased in Powhatan at which time the steam sawmill was moved.
In 1928 Dick married the prettest girl in Powhatan, Mary Franklin Worsham, and started a family of 6 children.
In 1929 the Depression came and there was no market for lumber so the sawmill sat in the woods doing very little.
In 1932 R. C. Goodwyn moved it to the site on which it is now located and set it up for a stationary mill and was able again to sell a little lumber retail to the local farmers.
In 1934 the first planer was put in to dress the lumber hoping to help increase sales. The business started to grow gradually and the annual amount of sales was less than $1,000.00
In 1941 A. H. Goodwyn wished to leave the business at which time R. C. Goodwyn, Dick, bought him out. The name of the business was changed from A. H. Goodwyn & Brother to R. C. Goodwyn Planing Mill. From that time inflation began and business increased and in 1942 the first office was built.
In 1946 an all electric planning mill was installed.
In 1948 a building material warehouse was built.
In 1952 a new addition was added to the office.
In 1957 the business was incorporated in the name of R. C. Goodwyn & Sons, Inc. at which time the sons received stock as part ownership of the corporation.
In 1959 an all electric sawmill was installed.
In 1966 another addition was added to the office which with up-to-date office equipment to help figure lumber and other building materials. This new space provided five work areas for the office personel.
In 1967 a new semi-automatic electric sawmill with a debarker and chipper made it possible to sell everything but the bark. The business grew to 30 employees manufacturing lumber and millwork.
During these years from 1932 to 1959 all of Dick and Mary's sons and daughter worked for the company. The two oldest sons, Royce and William, left the company to try their wings somewhere else. Royce went to work for a home builder and later started his own successful business. William went to work and retired from Richmond Lumber Company.
In 1966 Dick retired and N. B., better known as Tootie, became president.
During these next thirty years there were many changes and improvements to the company. When fire destroyed the sawmill built in 1967 a new and better sawmill was built in 1983. However, as larger companies could produce lumber more efficiently and the company could purchase it cheaper than manufacture it themselves the sawmill was closed 1990. This was the end of an era that began in 1918.
As always, when one door closes another door opens and so it was with this company. As the plug was pulled from the sawmill business due to the changes in the market, R. C. Goodwyn Lumber took on new visions. The company began putting more emphasis on complete home building products. These included doors and windows, millwork, siding, treated lumber and watching out for the new products that would interest our customers.
As the years passed new faces emerged. One by one the grandsons of R. C. Goodwyn joined the team. Michael in 1973, Art in 1979, Chris in 1982,Dennis in 1983 all came aboard ship to learn the business. They became truck drivers, sawmill men, planning mill operators, salesmen, and buyers. As they grew in knowledge so did the company.
After N. B. retired in 1996, Archie took the reins as president until he retired in March 2002.
R. C. Goodwyn, Jr., better known as Pal, became the president of the company in 2002.
It proved to be a good time to update equipment and trucks, purchasing the first tractor trailers for the company. Pal retired in April 2005.
Michael Goodwyn, the son of N. B. Goodwyn, becomes president at the age of 51.
As news came that Powhatan's only hardware store was closing, in 2007, the cousins decided to open up one of their own. Plans were made, a building was renovated, items were added to the inventory, and the hardware store is in full operation.
Many improvements have been made around the lumber yard as well. A new addition to the office has been completed with plentiful parking area for employees and customers. The new office brings with it a nice showroom and counter space for customer sales. Rollover dumpster containers were purchased and Goodwyn Trucking Service, LLC was born.
The company believes that its success and longevity comes from dedicated employees who provide good workmanship and quick service. Our employees take their jobs seriously and work with us during hard times as well as good. Loyalty not only comes from our employees but our customers have always been our main focus. All through the years our company has enjoyed the most wonderful customers who have become great friends as well.
R. C. Goodwyn & Sons looks forward to many more years of service to our customers and our community.