about us

our legacy

I picked up the pace as I approached my grandpa's wood shop walking from school, as I knew it would be warm inside. It was a cold dreary December day with little wisps of snow blowing across the road, one of those winter days when it never really gets light. I opened the door, immediately greeted by the wonderful smell of fresh sawdust and the faint smell of a warm wood fire; the busy hum of woodworking machines at work and the sound of old grass roots country music welcome me inside. My grandpa's strong callused hands delicately handled a rough piece of walnut, destined to become a piece of furniture. He greets me warmly and quickly resumes his work. I knew that might be the only words he spoke until it came time for a light supper, and hopefully some of grandma's homemade pie, followed by an hour or two of fiddle playing before bed time.
My grandpa knew rough times and hard work; he built homes and repaired barns right through the Great Depression. He worked hard, but more importantly, he was efficient by using his knowledge and what he had available to create a beautiful, durable product for his loyal customers. They would often pay him a little over the standard "dollar a day" due to the quality and efficiency of his work. Some local folks even credit him with the invention of the table saw; he designed a machine powered by an old gas powered washing machine engine to help him finish his products as quickly as possible.

island city, missouri

Cedar Ridge Rustic Millwork strives to follow in his footsteps, designing the highest quality products for our customers. Our home rests on a timber covered ridge overlooking what was once the small, bustling village of Island City, Missouri, established in 1857 by M.S. Couch. We believe in using what we have at hand and re- purposing old materials when we can, just like my grandfather using that old washing machine engine. We have eastern red cedar, oak, and hickory trees growing high on the ridge above Turkey Creek that can be harvested for a variety of projects. Or perhaps you have an old barn on your property with old wood or metal that could be recycled into a new product to display in your home for years to come. Our horses can be found grazing peacefully on the ridge or wandering through the timber and whitetail deer often frequent our salt block. 

ranch life

I'm greeted by nature's chorus as I step out into the inky darkness to start the day. The eerie howl of coyotes, the mournful hoot of a lone owl, and a group of bullfrogs attempt to drown out the others with their song surrounds me. I take a moment to appreciate the darkness; no artificial light to drown out the star filled sky. The whinny of a horse startles me into action; it's time for breakfast. I need to make a trip to the lumber yard early; my supplier is an Amish farmer and I'll need to get there before he heads out to the field with his team of horses.
Rural Missouri is a great place to raise a family. Our two daughters grew up on the back of a horse and working for our business to earn some extra money. My wife, Susie, has always been the anchor of our business. She handles customer relations, design concepts, and office management. She also works full time at our local elementary school in the reading program. She always manages to find time to keep us on schedule while taking great care of her family.
Our girls spent their early years reading, swimming in our pond, exploring the surrounding timber and vacant homesteads, and training horses. They learned that a quiet, consistent approach was effective in horse training, and later learned that these same qualities also make a good team. Our oldest daughter has nearly finished law school, and our youngest daughter is getting close to graduating with a degree in advertising and graphic design. We use this same team approach that our daughters learned at a young age in our business relations; we know it's important to be still and listen to the customer. 

our business

I went to work for a local construction company in 1983, and started my own business in 1988- Wiederholt Custom Homes. While Susie was in college at Northwest Missouri State University, I took any carpentry related work I could find to support us. I realized quickly that our success relied on a narrowed focus, so we began shifting our target to building custom homes. As our business grew, we went to a Chicago trade show where I purchased one of the very best residential computer aided drafting programs, SoftPlan. Custom design has always been the foundation of our business. We have built and designed over 60 custom homes over the past 30 years. 
We recently launched a new business segment, Cedar Ridge Rustic Millwork, to better serve our customers. This is a shop-based production company that mainly provides easy to install products for the DIY customer and the busy general contractor. We have applied our 30 years of experience designing and building homes into this new business segment to provide our customers with quality products built to last a lifetime. We hope that you will browse through our product offerings, and if you don't find what you're looking for please contact us. We are always happy to assist you in designing the perfect personalized product for your home. Thank you for supporting us, and we look forward to being on your team.

the shop crew