I’m Jim and I farm with my daughter, Hannah. We work a piece of land that’s been in our family since 1690. It’s a remarkable thing to have a farm which goes back that far in the same family, but in Calvert County, MD, it’s not all together unusual. In fact there’s quite a number of farms in the county and throughout Southern Maryland which fit the three century category. It’s just that kind of place.
For over three hundred years, tobacco was “king” in our neck of the woods. I was raised in tobacco. But I would be the last generation on that front. Hannah’s never helped in tobacco, the last crop being put in the barn some fifteen years before she was born. The farming story we have together is one of transition and adaptation.
I left a law enforcement career to pursue life on this farm. I’ve done a number of things here since then, from forestry work, to raising vegetables and running a CSA, to animal husbandry. Over the years I found the right combination of things for this small farm to succeed, and Hannah has chosen to join me in caring for this special place.
I grew up in a time when Dad milked the cow every morning by hand, Mom strained the milk, made butter and cottage cheese, and of course we always had milk for breakfast. I could always tell when spring came around and the wild garlic came up. It was time to stop drinking milk for a while! We had chickens for eggs and the the occasional chicken dinner. Dad always had cattle and at one time showed his prize Devon cattle up and down the east coast.
We made due with tractors out of the fifties and even machinery that was once used with horses, modified for the Farmal C tractor. I started in the fields around 5 years of age. I know I wasn’t much help, but that wasn’t the point; I was learning how work was done. I started driving the tractor around 8…I think I waited a little bit with Hannah and held her back until she was ten.
I began raising chickens for eggs and meat about twenty years ago. I had taken over the cattle herd from my father several years before. Soon after that I began going to the Old Town Alexandria Farmers Market. I guess you can say “the rest is history.”
We are committed to raising our animals without antibiotics, on pasture that has not been sprayed with herbicides or pesticides. We use nonGMO feed for our chickens and our hogs; the cows and the sheep are grass-fed.
We have changed with the times, taking a historic tobacco farm and turning it into a place where the finest lamb, pork, and poultry products are produced. We are constantly receiving unsolicited accolades from first-time buyers. Hannah and I are proud of what we do and take pride in the products we provide for your table. We look forward to serving you!