FLGenWeb Digital Library and Archives
BUNKER, E. W.
Transcribed from: The History of Florida: Past & Present, The Lewis Publishing Co., Vol.
III, page 149, 1923.
BUNKER, E. W. was one of the first citizens of the town of Lake Worth, joining that community
Pesented by Nancy Rayburn
the year the town was founded. All his previous experience had been in the lumber industry,
and as a lumberman he inherited the traditions of several generations in that industry. Mr.
BUNKER had barely established himself at Lake Worth when he began dealing in lumber, and he
has since organized and is president of the Lake Worth Lumber Company.
Mr. BUNKER was born in that once famous capital of the lumber industry, Muskegon, Michigan,
which at one time was the largest lumber manufacturing and lumber shipping point in the world.
He was born there in 1863. His grandfather BUNKER brought his family from New York State,
passing through Chicago on the road to Wisconsin in 1837 and located in Walworth County,
Wisconsin, where he had a share in the lumber industry. WILLIAM BUNKER, father of E. W.
BUNKER, was four years old when the family moved to Wisconsin. As a young man he started
the first sawmill at Muskegon, Michigan, in 1857. Thus he had the honor of initiating and
for a number of years he continued an active factor in the great lumber business of that city.
E. W. BUNKER literally grew up in the lumber industry, beginning as a boy on the saw dust
pile, and working through every department of the production, manufacturing and selling
phases of the business. He has operated several mills of his own. When he was a boy the
family returned to their old home place at Walworth County, Wisconsin, where he remained
several years. He then went back to Muskegon, and was there until he was twenty-two. Mr.
BUNKER finished his education in the University of Wisconsin, being a member of the class
of 1883, though he did not complete his senior year.
His business experience included eight years in the Pacific Coast lumber section, with
headquarters at Seattle. From 1893 to 1900 he operated a lumber yard at Duluth, Minnesota.
Following that he was engaged in the lumber business at Spooner, Wisconsin, and left there
to come to Lake Worth, Florida, in 1912.
The business that brought him to Lake Worth was as trustee of the purchasers of the land
and town lots that had been sold by the original town site company. As trustee he administered
the affairs within his jurisdiction to the best satisfaction of all concerned, and he has
remained one of the best satisfaction of all concerned, and he has remained one of the first
citizens of the town both in matter of time and in public spirit and business activity.
Mr. BUNKER reached Lake Worth in October, 1912, and a few days later, with only a barrel
for a desk and office, he sold his first carload of lumber. He made arrangements to purchase
this car of lumber after he had sold it, and it was later delivered by the railroad. From
that modest beginning he has created a business with an annual volume of sales running to
$100,000. He is practically the sole owner as well as president and manager of the Lake Worth
Mr. BUNKER in 1917, was elected on the regular democratic ticket as Palm Beach County's
representative in the Legislature. During the regular session of 1918 he gave careful thought
and consideration to the general work of that body, and was particularly influential in
securing the act under which the locks were built in the Palm Beach Canal at Lake Worth.
Mr. BUNKER married Mrs. NELLIE MILLER. She was born in Boston, but was reared and married
This page created August 24, 2010
© 2010 Fran Smith