Reclaimed lumber is processed wood retrieved from its original application for purposes of subsequent use. Most reclaimed lumber comes from timbers and decking rescued from old barns, factories and warehouses, although some companies use wood from less traditional structures such as boxcars, coal mines and wine barrels. Reclaimed or antique lumber is used primarily for decoration and home building, for example for siding, architectural details, cabinetry, furniture and flooring.
In the United States of America, wood once functioned as the primary building material because it was strong, relatively inexpensive and abundant. Today many of these woods that were once plentiful are only available in large quantities through reclamation. One common reclaimed wood, longleaf pine, was used in factories and warehouses built during the Industrial Revolution. Longleaf heart pine was once the most functional wood for construction in America. The trees were slow-growing (taking 200 to 400 years to mature), tall, straight, and had a natural ability to resist mold and insects. More importantly, it was abundant. Longleaf yellow pine grew in thick forests that spanned over 140,000 square miles.