Greenbrier Valley Conservation District recognizes historical farms

The Greenbrier Valley Conservation District has recognized four farms under the Century Farm Program for 2018.

A Century Farm is one that has been in continuous operation by the same family for at least 100 years. A Sesquicentennial Farm has been in continuous operation by the same family for at least 150 years, and a Bicentennial Farm has been in continuous operation by the same family for at least 200 years.

Green Valley Farm (Century):

Green Valley Farm was recognized as a Century Farm. Pictured: Angie Feamster (left), Kevin Sawyers, Andrew Sawyers, Loretta Sawyers, Gary Sawyers, and GVCD Supervisors Carolyn Miller, Timothy VanReenen, and Gary Truex.

Joseph Sawyers was a Confederate soldier from Virginia. After serving in an astounding 32 battles in the Civil War, he headed west where he became a surveyor. He was paid in land for his services, which he traded in 1895 for the Greenbrier County property which is now known as Green Valley Farm. Currently owned by Gary and Loretta Sawyers, it is now home to its sixth generation of Sawyers family members. Gary Sawyers is a Greenbrier Valley Conservation District Supervisor and a past president of the WV Association of Conservation Districts. Joseph Sawyers would be proud to know that 123 years later, his farm is still in good hands and that his great-grandson is conserving not only the family property, but also providing conservation leadership and education for the future. A video tribute to the Green Valley Farm can be viewed on the Greenbrier Valley Conservation District Facebook page.

Furrow Family Farm (Sesquicentennial):

The Furrow Family Farm was recognized as a Sesquicentennial Farm. Pictured: Avery Atkins, Monroe Coounty Supervisor (left), Betty Pullig, John David Furrow, and Carolyn Miller, Monroe County Supervisor.

The Furrow Family Farm, located on the South Fork of Potts Creek in Waiteville, WV, is steeped in family tradition, as well as in the history of Waiteville.  The farm is currently owned and operated by John David Furrow (6th generation) with assistance and moral support from Betty J. Pullig and Brennan Taylour Furrow (7th generation). Records indicate that farming has been on-going on this location since at least 1842 (Land Grant from the State of Virginia) and probably prior to this date as historically, settlers lived on the property several years prior to receiving their land grants. David Furrow is actively involved with 4-H and supports the Waiteville Community Center and cemetery. He is also a member of the American Cheviot Sheep Society and the Phoenix Society. A video tribute to the Furrow Family Farm can be viewed on the Greenbrier Valley Conservation District Facebook page.

John Skaggs Farm (Bicentennial):

The John Skaggs Farm was recognized as a Bicentennial Farm. Pictured: GVCD Supervisor Gary Sawyers (left), Pat Hennessee, Ernest Lee Skaggs, Jr., Dreama Skaggs-Hennessee, GVCD Supervisor Carolyn Miller, John Skaggs-Hennessee, and GVCD Supervisor Gary Truex.

In 1795, John Skaggs, Sr. received a sheepskin land grant, signed by Virginia Governor Robert Brooks, for 668 acres of land in the Wolf Creek District of Monroe County. Most of this land has been in the Skaggs Family since that time and over the years produced corn, wheat, hay, cattle, timber, sheep, hogs, turkeys, chickens, flax, and fruit trees. Currently owned by Dreama Skaggs-Hennessee, the farm is run by her sons Patrick, Robert, John, and Ed and now produces pure-bred black Angus cattle. Dreama Skaggs-Hennessee has been involved with 4-H since her youth, taught home economics at Lewisburg High School, and worked for WVU Extension Service. A video tribute to the John Skaggs Farm can be viewed on the Greenbrier Valley Conservation District Facebook page.

Trigger Run Farm (Bicentennial):

Trigger Run Farm was recognized as a Bicentennial Farm. Pictured: Monroe Co. Supervisor Avery Atkins (left), Ashley Tuggle (holding Graydon), Mitch Tuggle (holding Hattie Mae), Bill Tuggle, Bobbie Tuggle, and Monroe County Supervisor Carolyn Miller.

Peter Fleshman acquired this parcel of land in the year 1800, likely as payment rendered for his military service. Through the decades, this quaint homestead has been home to countless cows, sheep, chickens, and a variety of crops. Seven generations later, the farm is currently owned by William R. “Bill” Tuggle, Jr., and produces Hereford cattle. Running through the middle of the property meanders a small stream called “Trigger Run” for which the farm is named. This 120-acre plot of land holds much historical significance for the Tuggle family and also for the community of Peterstown, as it is adjacent to the where its founder first settled. A video tribute to the Trigger Run Farm can be viewed on the Greenbrier Valley Conservation District Facebook page.

For more information about the Century Farm program, please contact the Greenbrier Valley Conservation District at 304-645-6173 or download the application in PDF format from the West Virginia Conservation Agency website at http://wvca.us/education/century_farms.cfm.

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