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The History of Wood used in Industry; wooden crates, shoes and words?!?!

Wood is a precious commodity that has played a key role in every industry imaginable since the Paleolithic Period or “Stone Age”—some 2.6 million years ago.

wood shoes

Even back then, Paleolithic people were particular about the wood they chose. Wood was used for building, making weapons, and crafting furniture. They also used materials such as stone and bone, but wood, it seems, had the most staying power.

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When selecting wood, like modern people, Paleolithic humans considered quality, availability, intended use, and cost. Paleolithic humans also pioneered practices such as matching & fitting and removing or filling blemishes. These practices—with some fine-tuning, are still used today.

Moving forward to the Middle Ages, or the 10th -18th century. In Europe wood had become the chief material in machines, mills, furniture, carts, buildings, and even shoes. Worldwide, wood also played a key role in the transportation of goods with wood ships gliding over the water or wooden wheels winding their way over mountain terrain.


According to History, Nature, and Products of Wood by Professor Emeritus Robert L. Youngs of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, "the first printing press was made of wood...Most of the machines and inventions to make possible the machine age were formed of wood during that period."

DALL·E 2024-02-29 11.27.39 - old hand crafted board game box

Wood was even used to create everything from buckets, barrels, and wooden shipping crates to fine wooden boxes. While these custom, hand-crafted wooden boxes were used primarily for decorative purposes and to store precious items in the home, such as the board game box pictured above, others were used in the same way we use them today--for industrial-grade storage and shipping.

Valley Box yard with Boxes


Fast forward to today and wood is still being used in the construction of homes, furniture, and of course wooden crates.

About Valley Box Company

Since 1964 Valley Box has specialized in manufacturing industrial-grade custom packaging for unique, oversized, and delicate items. Visit our website

Topics: Wood

Valley Box Company

Written by Valley Box Company

Valley Box demonstrates what is possible beyond just the typical wooden crate. This specialty crating manufacturer works with a wide variety of materials from wood to plastic, corrugated, metals and more. Discover how to take specialty crating to the next level.