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Britton Lumber Is Sold to CPA

Fairlee — A 67-year-old family business is changing hands in January.

Britton Lumber Co., which started in 1946 in Hartland and now has two divisions on Ely Road in Fairlee, is being sold to Robert E. Moses, of Lebanon.

“This is the kind of buyer who has a long relationship with the company and is going to have a very low impact on the operation,” said owner Douglas G. Britton, of Norwich, who purchased the company from his father, Allen H. Britton Jr., in 1984 and who has worked for the company since 1973.

Moses has worked with Britton Lumber for 25 years as the company’s accountant and has an in-depth knowledge of the firm, Britton said.

For 26 years, Moses owned and operated Robert E. Moses, Certified Public Accountants at 44 School St. in Lebanon. He sold the business in February to Nathan Wechsler & Co. of Concord.

Britton Lumber was started by Allen Britton and his sons Allen Britton Jr. and Leonard Britton. They ran both portable and stationary sawmills in Hartland, West Fairlee and Ely until the 1960s, the company’s website says.

In 1971, the company moved to its present location in Fairlee, and now operates two divisions with 60 employees. Its manufacturing unit operates a sawmill, dry kilns and planermill in Fairlee that produces about 10 million board feet a year of Eastern white pine boards. The wholesale distribution unit sells building materials from warehouses in Fairlee and Gray, Maine.

Britton Lumber’s manufactured products are sold to wholesalers and distributors in the U.S. and Canada, and the wholesale division has 200 lumberyard and home center customers in New England and New York.

The company has just completed a significant upgrade of its sawmill machinery and is in the process of hiring additional staff for the wholesale division, Britton said.

The sale becomes effective on Jan. 1, and Moses will become president and chief executive officer. Britton will stay on for up to a year in an advisory position, he said.

“There are a lot of moving pieces, and he knows about a lot of them, but some I’m more familiar with. I’ll be available when he needs me.”

Warren Johnston can be reached at wjohnston@vnews.com or 603-727-3216.