Cotton-Hanlon – Celebrating 100 Years

Join us in celebrating NHLA member, Cotton-Hanlon, as they mark 100 years in business.

A. Hanlon was the son of a 3rd generation lumberman operating in Chemung Valley, New York. B. J. Cotton was a merchant and lumberman of Tioga County, New York. In 1921 Hanlon and Cotton formed a partnership that is still fruitful 100 years later. The combination of their collective knowledge and drive to succeed in business created a company that was built to last: Cotton-Hanlon.

Cotton-Hanlon became an early vertically integrated forest products company. From the forest to the sawmill, to the wholesale lumber yard, to the retail store, Cotton- Hanlon provided it all. Timber, logs, lumber, millwork, paneling, sailboats, skis, toboggans, and furniture, just to name a few items. The retail store located in Odessa, NY, was known as “The Home Complete” and it sold everything needed to build and furnish a home.

There is nothing better than the warm, rich feel and look of wood, which begins in the forest. Cotton-Hanlon understands this and continues this practice today. Cotton-Hanlon owns and manages 33,000 acres of some of the finest hardwood timberland in the world. Recognizing it can take a century to grow fine hardwood saw timber, their foresters are planning for the next 100 years as they manage their lands today. Today’s veneer quality timber is their seed source for the timber of their great-grandchildren. Cotton-Hanlon has always been committed to good forestry. They have grown and prospered since 1921 because of their dedicated efforts of stewardship associated with renewable forest resources.

Cotton-Hanlon takes great pride in what they provide to the community: clean air, clean water, open space, wildlife habitat, carbon sequestration, and sustainable wood products from their woodlots.

To succeed in business for 100 years is no small feat. H. A. Hanlon and B. J. Cotton had great foresight in their creation and management of Cotton-Hanlon. The second and third generations of Cottons and Hanlons contributed to the success of the company and are actively involved in its management.

Michael W. Hanlon, the current president of Cotton-Hanlon, looks forward to what is next saying, “As we look forward to our next 100 years, we see a bright future. Sure there will be challenges. That is why they call it work. We foresee the use of forest products for many years to come.”

Howard A. Hanlon was a Past President of NHLA from 1956 to 1958. He authored several books on the hardwood industry. There is an award named after him given by NHLA Inspector Training School to the student with the second-highest grade point average.

Congratulations on 100 years in the business, Cotton-Hanlon.  The National Hardwood Lumber Association is proud to call you a member.