"The German-American Lumber Company had no motive except a purely business motive." So stated Gerhard Rolfs, treasurer of the company, as the federal government proceeded to take over this German-owned business during World War I. At issue was the charge that the firm was a front organization for German espionage operations during the war. This, as the evidence revealed, was not the case. Yet the emotional fervors of a nation at war had created suspicions about the alien-owned lumber company which had been an important part of Florida’s yellow-pine industry. The German-American Lumber Company was not a subversive organization. To its owners it was no more than a business venture.
Keuchel, Edward F.
"A Purely Business Motive: German-American Lumber Company, 1901-1918,"
Florida Historical Quarterly: Vol. 52
, Article 4.
Available at: https://stars.library.ucf.edu/fhq/vol52/iss4/4