MPW.70 / 2018 Jacob Hughes: Ozark Sawyer by John Ewing
Photographer
John Ewing New York, N.Y.
Team Lee

Story Summary

A newcomer to the Mountain Grove community, Jacob Hughes, 31, is trying to maintain balance between his family obligations and the challenges of operating a new business within a fabled Ozark industry – lumber.

Jacob notes “the product itself is pretty much already sold,” but he is constantly on the move to source enough raw material to keep his sawmill operating daily. The monthly overhead is high, the mechanical failures and maintenance are constant, and there are growing concerns that tariffs could affect their bottom line.

Jacob juggles raising two rambunctious young boys with his wife, Ashton, 28, who helps out with the real estate aspect of their business. While it can be difficult for him to carve out time for himself, he makes it work.