Informations collected by Hans Nørgaard
Homestead of St. Peter, Jersey Island
On October 18th 1996 Thomas Francis Le Ruez invited me to have dinner at Homestead in St. Peter on Jersey Island. It was quite a special event to me, as we were celebrating the centennial for the first shipment of Jersey cattle meant for Denmark. The steamer "Jyden" left St. Helier on October 15th, 1896 with 84 Jerseys on board, bought by the Danish pioneer Jørgen Larsen, Gårdbogård.
Thomas Francis Le Ruez
Thomas Francis`s grandfather Francis Le Brocq pioneered the export of cattle to England and America. During his lifetime he bought and shipped more than 30.000 head of stock - an amazing number, when one realises that the total stock in Jersey at that time, as now, was less than 8.000, though it rose to over 11.000 in the 1930s. He was also responsible, at the turn of the century, for the export of many hundred animals to Denmark, to form the nucleus of the breed now famous in that country.
Two of the most famous breeders and cattle dealers in the island of Jersey, Francis Le Brocq and John A. Perrée in front of Niagara Falls in US.
Francis Le Brocq married off his daughter Adele to Henry Prouings Le Ruez, son of Thomas Le Ruez, a Constable of St. Mary. He started a herd with the purchase of a cow called Sainte Louise 6th. She was a heavy milker and, bred to a famous bull, Majesty, she produced Majesty`s Louise. The Louise line has ever since been much sought after.
Henry Prouings Le Ruez, son of Thomas, and father of Thomas Francis came to Homestead in St. Peter from his father`s farm, Westfield, in 1923. He brought with him two cows and two yearling heifers Summer Louise and Dairy Gambogia, both of the Louise strain. The latter produced a daughter, Sweet September, which caused a sensation when she appeared before the Herd Book judges. Though she was early exported and never shown, she established the reputation of the herd. Her son "Right Royal" commanded the highest stud fee of the time in Jersey, and was later very successful in the U.S.A. and Canada.
According to Jersey Evening Post on December 24th 1999 "Francis Le Ruez has been made an honorary life member of the Royal Jersey Agricultural and Horticultural Society - only the sixth person in the society's history to be so honoured.
Mr Le Ruez (85) was described as 'a master breeder and great ambassador for the Jersey cow worldwide' by the society's president, Lewis Rondel, at a gathering of some 50 members, held at Les Charrières Hotel.
The meeting followed the recent announcement of Mr Le Ruez's honorary life membership to the society's annual general meeting.
Delivering a tribute to Mr Le Ruez at the meeting, RJAHS vice-president Derrick Frigot said: 'Francis has always been a shy man, never someone to push himself forward. This was highlighted when he was told about this award. In typical fashion, his first remark was, "But there must be someone more deserving than me!'' '
Mr Le Ruez, who was at the reception with his wife, Elin, his children, Henry and Elisabeth, brothers, sisters, and other relatives, replied to Mr Frigot's tribute by saying simply: 'I don't deserve anything; I do appreciate it.'
In his address, Mr Frigot said that as important as the breeding of cattle was in Jersey, it was evident
that this could also be said of cattle breeding families, and Mr Le Ruez's own bloodlines were 'steeped in the purple of cattle breeding families'.
Mr Le Ruez's paternal grandfather, Thomas, started the family herd, and his grandfather on his mother's side, Francis Le Brocq, pioneered the export of cattle from the Island to England, the USA and Denmark. He shipped in total more than 30,000 head of stock, and established the Jersey breed in Denmark.
Thomas Le Ruez's sons, Henry and Ernest Le Ruez, were both expert cattle breeders, as, in the next generation, were three of Henry Le Ruez's eight children - Francis, and his two brothers John and Laurence"
The Royal Jersey Herd at Windsor, England
Kensington Palace What to see: The rooms is hung with paintings collected by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, including, The Victoria Cow by Thomas Sidney Cooper. The cow was sent to the Queen from Jersey in 1843 and was said to have been named ‘Victoria’ from the ‘V’ shaped mark between its horns. The picture was commissioned by the Queen who was said to be delighted with the finished work.
In 1837 Her Majesty Queen Victoria ascended the Throne, and shortly after graciously granted Her Royal Patronage upon the Jersey Royal Agricultural and Horticultural Society. She visited the Island of Jersey with the Prince Consort in 1846, when a gift of fruit was presented to her. The following year the Society sent a two year old heifer (bought from Mr. Thomas Filleul for £23) and a yearling bull with another heifer, both given by the Society`s President, Sir John Le Couteur, to Windsor, where Sir John, representing the Society made a gift of the animals to Prince Albert.
Sir John Le Couteur tells in his diary: "Took a mail train from Paddington to Slough, got there and on to Windsor by 10. Called to see Lord Spencer, the Lord Chamberlain...who oblingly sought for Colonel Phipps. He being away, the Earl referred me to General Wemyss at the home farm, where the appointment was made, and here I repaired.
Unluckily for me the Queen had just driven to see the cattle...and had just left, otherwise I should have explained matters to herself in person unattended, for Her Majesty happened to be in her pony chaise. I sent my card to the Prince, who sent for the cattle to show them to the Duchess of Kent at Frogmore.
There we found the Grand Duke Constantine of Russia, the Prince of Saxe Weimar, the Prince of Saxe Leningen, Prince George of Cambridge and a host of attendants. All the royalty came out with Prince Albert, who spoke to me in the most kind and affable manner, even so much so as to reach out his hand, then to recollect etiquette: and very kindly and politely expressed his sense of the compliment, a very acceptable one, of the very beautiful cattle which the Jersey Agricultural Society had made to him: and desired me to make suitable thanks to the society in the most gracious terms. The animals were greatly admired. The Grand Duke asked the Prince what were their valuable points beyond their beauty. The Prince of Saxe Weimar put me the same question, which I explained. The Prince then handed Tocque and I to General Wemyss and charged him, as he afterwards told me, to show us every civility and attention. The kind General then took us all over the royal aviary, dairy farms etc., where everything is nearly "comme il faut". His farming is really good, and real improvements have taken place since old K., the late King`s farmer had them".
Victorian Voices. An introduction to the papers of Sir John Le Couteur, Q.A.D.C., F.R.S. by Joan Stevens.
Both the Queen and Prince Albert were extremely interested in agricultural reform, setting up a model farm on their new estate at Osborne and enlarging and improving the farms at Windsor and Balmoral.
Their involvement lent further momentum to the national agricultural movement. Cattle Show was held at Windsor Home Park. The Queen named her favourite farm animals after members of her family and employed several artists to paint them. In 1848 the famous animal painter Thomas Sidney Cooper was summoned to Osborne House in Isle of Wight to paint Queen Victoria`s Jersey Cow "Buffie" which had been presented to her by the Island of Jersey.
Most of the paintings of royal farm animals have been dispersed or destroyed, but fortunately
photographs of several of them survive in the Royal Collection inventories. More sophisticated farm animal paintings, such as Keyl`s Among the Southdowns or Thomas Sidney Cooper`s Jersey Cow, were hung inside the Royal Palaces.
There are two diary herds at the Royal Farms, which date from George III's reign. The farms were at a low level during subsequent reigns due to lack of interest, until Prince Albert raised the farms again to the status of model farms.
In 1849, Prince Albert arranged for the pasture land to be stocked with dairy cows, mainly Dairy Shorthorns but also some Jerseys (known contemporarily as Alderney cows), which were the foundation of the existing Jersey herd.
The other dairy herd at the Royal Farms is an Ayrshire herd, formed in 1951 in the last year of George VI's reign. Each herd numbers 150 cows. By tradition, the herds have been kept to Jerseys and Ayrshires.
Milk was and is still supplied from the Jersey herd to the Dairy (built in 1858 in Windsor Home Park under the personal direction of Prince Albert); while the creamery remains unchanged, the outbuildings have been equipped with up-to-date dairy machinery. The Dairy used to supply not only the Royal family but also a large number of Castle and Home Park residents, but it began to run at a loss. Since 1975, it has supplied dairy produce only to The Queen, Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, The Prince of Wales and Princess Margaret; the rest of the milk is sold to a national wholesaler.
By 1863, there were 80 Shorthorn and 12 Alderney cows being milked at the farm and total stock totalled 240 head. The first Jersey cow recorded on the farm was in 1871 with the arrival of Pretty Polly from Osborne House on the Isle of Wight, where Her Late Majesty, Queen Victoria had a small herd. There are 10 cows in the herd today which can be traced back to Pretty Polly.
Fauvic`s Juanita was bought in 1931 and Coronet`s Grace and Lionheart Grace are direct descendants in the herd today. Queen Lavender 1913 has five progeny milking at this time.
There appears to have been a period of establishment with no further female additions recorded until the early 1950s when the Sandringham herd was dispersed. At this time the Sandringham Jade, Galaxy and Nan families were added. In 1959 two Hursley cows, Riff and Reverie, were purchased and made a strong impression on the herd. Riffs breeding features in the cows Polyanthus, Cyclamen and Gillyflower. Reverie produced Cardinal`s Kerrie and Lousise`s Prophecy and has more than 20 offspring in the herd today.
Purchases from the Jersey island and the mainland in the 1960s and 70s extended the female base. The Natalie family through Golden Natali`s Maid, Sparkling Natalie and Surprise Sparks Natalie have made significant contributions being descendants of Natalie`s Nell.
In 1977 the Crocus and Haughty families were introduced from the world-famous Ferdon herd in New Zealand. Since this time further families have been added to strengthen the female side.
On the paternal side some notable sires have been used. Browny`s Louise`s Sparkler and Itaska`s Fillpail King from the Island of Jersey both made significant contributions with Sparker siring many Royal Show champions.
With the introduction of New Zealand blood into the herd there is no doubt that Ferdon Glens Coronet and later, Ferdon Tandra`s Elton both left their stamp. It is interesting to note that the winning Burke Trophy pair at the Royal Show 1982 were sired by Coronet and out of cows sired by Sparkler.
To complete the international contribution, Canadian bloodlines have been introduced through the legendary Meadowlawn Bright Spot and Valleystream Silver Jay. An outstanding example of the latter sire is seen in Windsor Silver J. Octobergirl 3 EX92 out of a Coronet cow. Currently, Meadowlawn J Imperial is being used.
The Royal Jersey Herd Windsor. Brochure, 1992.
Brighstone Jerseys, Isle of Wight
The value of the Jersey breed for dairy produce seems to have been known on the Isle of Wight from the earliest periods. The Rev. Mr. Warner wrote the Agricultural Survey of the Island in
1794, and remarked that "the cows are mostly of the Alderney breed, though mixed with English sorts. They are extremely profitable, some of them giving during part of the summer 10 lbs. of butter per week. It is a matter of surprise that this breed is not more generally known in other parts of the kingdom than appears to be the case. The original price of a good Alderney cow, at the place where she is imported, is seldom more than 8 guineas; she is equally hardy with our own breed, consumes less provender, and certainly yields as rich milk, the cream of which gives a richness to butter not observable in what is made from the English cow". Her Majesty`s herd at Osborne has been supplied by Mr. Michael Fowler; bulls have been imported and also used from Col. Cavendish`s and Mr. Fuller`s herds. Mr. Pittis had for some years a herd near Newport; Mr. J.R. Fisk also keeps a herd at Brighstone, to which the Town Hill stock has been used; and Mr. Hammick`s at Mirables is bred entirely from animals specially selected on the Island.
Mr. Fisk, at Brighstone, in the Isle of Wight, has a good and wellmanaged herd. To imported cows he uses mostly bulls bred in England; and he finds the Jerseys quite as hardy as crossbred animals. The calf is allowed to remain on the dam about a week, according to its strength; it is then weaned on new milk for a month, afterwards on warmed skim milk with beans or peas and hay until four months old. The quantity of milk is then reduced and sliced mangolds substituted; and, if the season is mild, the calves are turned out to grass, with a shed to run in, getting a little cake or corn. At eight months old they keep themselves on pasture; but if late calves, and the weather is severe, they are housed at night and fed with roots and hay. As yearlings they are wintered in an open yard with a shed, getting a few roots or cake and hay. If the hay crop be short, straw is substituted with a little extra cake, meal or roots. The meal is mixed usually with chaff. The bull is turned in with them when they are about fifteen months old.
Mr. Fisk attributes much of his success to the manner in which he manages his stock. The cow calves in a loose box, and receives a bran mash twice a day and lukewarm water, and on the third day i allowed, if the weather is fine, to go into a sheltered yard for a few hours in the middle of the day. On the seventh or eight day she is put into the cowhouse, and fed on meal and chaff or cake with hay. The meal is usually a mixture of barley, pea, and maize, of which about 10 lbs. is given in winter and 6 lbs. in summer. Every day the cows go out in a sheltered yard, and if the weather is fine on a dry pasture. In warm weather they lie out at night; but the meal or cake is still continued until the cow is let dry, which is generally six weeks before calving. During these six weeks she is allowed to run into a sheltered yard, with rough hay or a little barley or oat straw. Mangolds are never given until late in the spring; and it is found that they increase the flow of milk, but do not increase the yield of butter. Under this system Mr. Fisk has never lost a cow from milk fever. The yield of butter is considered to depend not only upon the cow is kept at any one time, but upon the general management. The greatest return from 15 cows was 10 lbs. each weekly for several weeks; the heifers made 6 lbs. The milk is allowed to remain, according to the weather, from 24 to 36 hours. The cream is then taken and churned twice a week. Compared with that from other animals, the cream requires less working.
Owing to the closeness of the texture of the butter there is a very small quantity of whey; and the butter keeps firmer and sweeter and longer in hot weather than that made from other cows under the same system.
The Brighstone herd has been owned by the Fisk family for well over 100 years and a reference to Jersey bulls (or Alderneys as the breed was otherwise known) registered by Mr. J. R. Fisk was mentioned in the first volume of the English Herdbook of Jersey Cattle .
Volume I was published in 1879 and contained, amongst other subjects such as a history of the breed, prize winners and auction results, a list of bulls born before 1 January of that year, with their first Jersey bull being bought on the island from Queen Victoria`s herd sterns from such stockbulls as Baronet (from 1878), Chandor 2 (born 1876), Felix (born 1878) and Snowball (born 1877), all listed in that first issue of the herdbook and tracing within one or two generations back to stock imported from the Island of Jersey itself.
Richard Fisk is the fourth generation of his family to farm at both Slate and Marsh Green Farms, purchased back in 1866 and has been running the business since he left ??? Agricultural College in 1970.
The total area farmed now accounts for some 600 acres of which the dairy unit lies on a day-loam type soil with the arable land being predominently greensand.
Other than the farm, the family also has a thriving self-catering holiday unit which is run by Richard´s wife, Susan.
The Fisk family have traditionelly stayed loyal to the Jersey breed over the years of change as in Richard`s word "the Jerseys have always served us well, and I believe the breed has done a great job in noot kust maintaining its status", and he continues, "In the future I personally feel that the Jersey will increase its potential and relevance to modern farming trends by continuing to improve, especially when treated as a true alternavtive to the predominant black and white breed.
The herd is milked through a 16/16 herringbone parlour and housed in kennels with a complete diet leeding system being urilised in a covered feed area.
It is hoped that the number of milking cows, currently around the 180 mark and yielding about 1600 kgs milk( 5.53% bf 3.80% ptn) from 1.7 tonnes of concentrates will gradually increase to a herd of 250 milking cows plus youngstock. With all milk produced being sold through Milk Marque on a 5.85% bf base quota, this forward looking herd will be yielding for excess of 5.500 profitable litres per cow. Following a few more refinements, the complete dier feeding programme currently utilising grass and maize silage ? barley and a soya/rape meal blend should enable the ? yields to increase, in random with a slight lowering of butterfat levels in relation to protein production.
Even with the continuing changes to the milk pricing structure Richard Fisk is firmly convinced that his Brighstone herd can at the worst match the other dairy breeds on either a margin per litre or margin per hectare basis, although the aim is to outperform.
The breeding plan of the herd has always leaned predominantly to the use of UK bulls, although over the last four years this has swung across the water towards the USA. The first main ? of heifers to complete lactations resulting from this change in policy have impressed Richard, commenting specifically on the daughters of Mollybrook Brass Major which have yielded well with a corresponding drop in fat percentages. Richard goes on to say: "Our commitment to this change is such that we are using Highland Duncan Lester over the herd and Headspring Sooner Champ on our heifers with the intention of increasing yields." Lower yielding cows are bred to a Belgian Blue bull with the resultant beef cross calves being reared on and fattened at 18 to 24 months on a grass silage and barley diet.
Looking further into the future and more to his own aims rather than those of the Brighstone Jerseys, Richard is hoping to be semi-retired with his son, the fifth generation running the farm, sure of the fact that "with contiuning attention to detail, the Jersey breed will succeed", and the long established Brighstone herd will move on into the 21st century when "the quality producer will come back into voque as everyone will become disillusioned with the health kick approach to life".
Osberton, Worksop, Nottinghampshire, England
The Osberton herd is one of the oldest Jersey herds in the country as it was started by the Rt. Hon. F.J.S. Foljambe in 1869 mainly to provide milk and butter for his household and employes. The herd gradually increased to a maximum of 120 cows in 1967 by the founders great grandson, Mr. G.M.T. Foljambe. Although the milking portion of the herd was effectively dispersed in 1988 following the sale of Osberton Hall, Mr. Foljambe retained the youngstock which provided the foundation of today´s herd.
The breeding of the Osberton herd is steeped in England´s traditional bloodlines and prior to the sale in 1989 a number of selected females had been introduced to strengthen the herd from leading U.K. herds such as Hungerton, Trafford, Histon, Powerscourt and Hockesley.
The breeding policy at Osberton has included the use of the leading sires of the breed and since the introduction of international semen, the herd has been influenced firstly by the early Canadian sires, followed by a strong influence of New Zealdnd breeding, and, following the reestablishment of the dairy herd in 1989 at Mill Farm on the Osberton Estate a blend of U.S, Canadian and New Zealand breeding.
Woolcombe Rob´s Angel
It was during this time of starting again at Mill Farm that the four-year-old cow, Woolcombe Rob´s Angel was purchased at the dispersal herd of breeder, Jim Morrish. At the time of the sale, she was milking in the ninth month of her second lactation, and carrying calf to Danish Ibsen. The sire of Rob´s Angel was Auchlea Quant´s Rob Roy and her female line descended from the noted Bollhayes herd.
She is milking well again in her eighth lactation, peaking at just under 40 kgs daily. The calf she was carrying at the time of the sale turned out to be a heifer, born in December 1990 and named Osberton Angel. She has now matured into an excellent production cow.
A second daughter, Osberton Angel 3, by Ferdon Glens Coronet, is the highest classified heifer in the herd and is projected to well in excess of 5.000 kgs milk in her first lactation. A third daughter, by Meadow Lawn J. Imperial is also milking with her first calf at a similar level.
Today at Mill Farm, the Osberton herd is making steady improvement all the time, evidenced by the successes in the Nottinghamshire National Milk Records Herd Competition in the past four years. They have consistently won the Channel Islands section and Rob´s Angel won the All-Breeds Senior Cow class in 1994.
The herd´s annual rolling average is currently 4816 kgs milk 5.84% fat 3.79% protein on 96 cows with a milk value of £1500 per cow. The margin over purchased feed is £1269 per cow.
The 74 ha Mill Farm nestles in a very attractive area of northern Nottinghamshire, and the facilities include a loose-housed system with self-feed silage. The cows are milked through a Gascoigne 12/12 herringbone computerised parlour. The basic feed used is grass silage mixed with brewers´grains and beet pulp. Feed to milk is closely monitored by computer with a 22% protein, starch-based dairy cake fed in the parlour and in out-of-parlour feeders.
Future plans include increasing the milking herd to 120 cows and since 1989 when the milking herd was reestablished at Mill Farm, it has been managed by the husband and wife team of Mick and Ruth Watson, whose dedication and interest in the development of the herd is evident in the results achieved and when visiting the farm.
Billings Farm and Museum of Woodstock, Vermont, USA
The Billings Farm was established in 1871 by Frederick Billings, a native Vermonter who became known for his work as a lawyer, conservationist, pioneer in reforestation and scientific farm management, and railroad builder.
Billings set out to make his 270-acre farm a model dairy operation. In 1884 he hired George Aitken, an innovative and successful professional farm manager. The farm imported cattle directly from the Isle of Jersey, kept careful records of milk production, and bred selectively to improve the herd.
Deeply concerned with the desperate condition of Vermont's forest cover, Billings planted more than 10,000 trees in the Woodstock area, putting into practice ideas that were proposed by an earlier resident of the farm, George Perkins Marsh. Marsh is widely recognized as one of this country's first conservationists.
By 1890, the year that Frederick Billings died, the Billings Farm had been expanded to nearly 1,000 acres, and was widely acknowledged for its premier Jersey herd, Southdown sheep, and Berkshire hogs, as well as its extensive butter-making operation which produced 5,000 pounds of butter annually.
Three years later, at the Columbian Exposition in Chicago, cows from the Billings herd took top honors in the dairying divisions. Billings' Princess Honoria, was crowned the champion Jersey three-year-old and reserve champion for cows of all ages. Lily Garfield, winner of the butter test, left Chicago with the designation "Champion Heifer of the World." The herd's performance at the exposition was the ictorious culmination of the Billings Farm's early years.
Following the Billings/Aitken era, the farm experienced several periods of change, including a successful commercial dairy operation beginning in the 1940s. In the mid-1970s, the breeding of championship-calibre cows resumed. A string of regional show winnings throughout the 1970s and '80s, culminated when Billings Top Rosanne won top honors in both American and Canadian competitions, making her perhaps the finest Jersey in North America.
During the last decade, the farm has developed an educational mission in conjunction with the Billings Farm & Museum, a museum devoted to rural life in east-central Vermont. The farm and museum have been merged into a single entity, sharing the mission of preserving this historic farm, as well as educating the many thousands who visit annually.
In the coming years, visitors will see greater emphasis placed on the history of the farm, historical farm technology and techniques, crop rotation, and a greater diversity of livestock (along the lines of Frederick Billings' farm of 1890) while still maintaining a high-quality herd of Jerseys. Our goal is to reach significant numbers of Americans to convey an understanding and appreciation of the importance of dairy farming and rural life.
The Berwick Herd, Shropshire in the Northwest Midlands of England
Mr. James Watson, great grandfather of Mrs. Angell-James, bought Berwick House and estate,in 1875.Between 1875 and September 1879, when Mr. and Mrs. Watson and their daughter, later to become Mrs. Phillipps, moved from Birmingham to Berwick, a major reconstruction of the house, stabling and Home Farm had taken place.
A Jersey house-cow arrived at Berwick,with the family,in 1879 and in the following year(1880) the English Jersey Cattle Society records the sale of "Moth" for 24 gns. to Mr. James Watson.By 1885,as can be seen in the photograph,the nucleus of a herd existed on the Home Farm,although there is no further transfer recorded until 1933 when Mr.Watson's son in law Mr.W.W.G.Phillipps)registered the herd pre-fix 'Berwick'.
The first animal to be ear marked,with PW1,was Berwick Lad,out of Scorching Louise by Louise's Wonderful. Scorching Louise was purchased from Mr. John Le Brocq of St Mary, Jersey.At about the same time Mr. Phillipps also imported Pertinax from Mr. P.P.Laisney of Trinity to use on the un-registered animals.Mr.Phillipps maintained his membership of the English Jersey Cattle Society until 1940 and during that time purchased Charlton Abbotts Standard 18164 from Mrs.Hayes-Sadler in November 1934 and Easton Siberite 20332 in April 1938.Berwick Scorching Prince 19126 had also been used in the herd. In 1942 Mr. F.S. Neale,son-in law of Mr. Phillipps and father of Mrs. Angell-James,became a member of the society,and took over the Berwick prefix,and purchased a number of animals to strengthen the herd.The first bull bought was Scarlett Fancy Design 21956 (September 1943),and Mr.Neale subsequently purchased Voelas Glorious Gnome 23581 from Mr.Pugh,one of the founder members of the the Welsh and Shropshire Jersey Breeders' Association.In 1944, Normanby Ortona 2nd's Designer, in 1947, Surville Design's Philip 27164, Hanley Cyclist 29994, Pool House Visitor 35342, Longmynd Gamboge's Victor 37537 and Everdon Royal Prince 39956 in subsequent years.Hanley Vandal 40053 was, in 1968, the last animal to be purchased for many years.
The herd is the third oldest in England predated only by the Windsor herd of the Queen and one other.The farm is situated about 2 miles from the town of Shrewsbury. At present the herd consists of 100 milking cows plus some 90 followers.There are also 2 stock bulls.The herd calves all the year round. The cows are milked twice daily through a traditional 8 abreast parlour.In winter the cows are complete diet fed using a mixture of maize and grass silage with fodder beet.Summer feeding is based on set stocking of pasture with buffer feed of maize silage on offer.All lactating animals are fed in the parlour according to yield. Current herd average is 5250 kg milk at 5.75% fat and 4.12% protein.The calving index is 367.Breeding is predominantly USA with some Canadian,Danish and New Zealand influence.Our oldest cow is Berwick Flashpoint Remuil now 11 years old and still going strong !
Our next generation of young bulls are on the way with sons of Greenwood Sooner Khan,Comfort Royal Alf & Althea's Select.
Kameruka Estate near Bega on the Sapphire Coast of NSW - Australia
Kameruka An attractive and unusual village famous for its long association with cheese production. Kameruka is a village and historic estate 449 km south of Sydney via the Princes Highway and 21 km southwest of Bega.
Europeans moved into the Kameruka area in 1834 when the Imlay Brothers took up a 200000-acre cattle run. The depression in the early 1840s saw the Imlays forced to hand their land over to the Walker Brothers, Sydney merchants in 1844. It was the Walkers who established the homestead at Kameruka.
Born in Scotland the Walker Brothers attempted to replicate the lifestyle of the eighteenth-century British gentry. They built a four-roomed Georgian house and indulged in dingo hunting - a kind of local equivalent of an English fox hunt. An Aborigine named Tom Doolin was their master of the hounds, and a stone cairn, which still stands, was erected to his memory.
William Walker (1787-1854) was the son of a Scottish laird who joined a firm of merchants operating out of Calcutta. In 1813 he was sent to Sydney to collect debts owed by Robert Campbell, a merchant and the co-founder of the colony's first savings bank.
The Walkers sold their properties to the Twofold Bay Pastoral Association in 1852, a joint venture of the Manning brothers, the Tooth brothers (members of the renowned Kent Brewery family of Sydney) and T.S. Mort. Kameruka was made the head station of a 400000-acre empire. James Manning acted as resident manager until the partnership was dissolved in 1860. Manning encouraged German immigrants to settle in the district hence the number of German names in the district.
Manning bought Kameruka in 1861 but floods, disease and the Land Act broke up the family holdings and, after losing 7000 cattle through pneumonia, Manning sold Kameruka in 1862 to Frederick Tooth who, in turn, sold it to his nephew Robert Tooth (1844-1915) in 1864. It was Robert who began to develop the largely self-contained community, based on the English agricultural estate system.
Today the estate covers 5000 acres of undulating countryside. Owned by Tooth's granddaughter and great grandson it is run, in part, by share farmers.
In 1880, Robert Lucas Tooth laid down the foundations of the Jersey Herd in the Colonies by importing the bull Lucius and the cows Majestic, Princess Royal and Pretty Queen from England. They made their home at Erridge Park and the herd was then strengthened three years later by the purchase of some Australian born stock, amongst them the bull Sumner and the cow Alderney Queen. In 1888, when Robert made plans to move his family back to England, the herd was transferred to Kameruka and they became the nucleus for the breeding program. The herd at one time included more imported animals than any other in Australia and these early bloodlines still exist in the Stud herd today.
In 1903 Robert Lucas Tooth made a decision to cross breed the Jerseys with the Shorthorns. ..... 1907 there were two cross bred herds, and Jersey bulls were being used to start a third herd at Wolumla. Mr. Champneys - the Manager - was much impressed with Guernsey cattle and recommended the purchase of a few to form a Stud herd. It was the Jerseys though, which had come into fashion and many local breeders were raising good useful herds with the breed beginning to extend all over the district. After entering the Jersey cattle at the Candelo Show, Mr. Champneys wrote “the men who could see no good in the breed have turned right around and sing their praises. Some go so far as not to see any good in other breeds which is very absurd-”
The purchase of the Stud Jersey Bull Combination Jack was to be a great asset to the Estate, and in addition to this beast a further six Jersey cows arrived at Kameruka.
Always looking at ways in which to improve the presentation of Kameruka, Mr. Champneys put foward the idea of building a small Home Farm Butter Factory for the Jersey`s He suggested small Home Farm Butter Factory for the Jersey`s He suggested that it be built on the lines of a swiss Chalet with cement floors and walls tiled up three feet. To add to the attractiveness all the dairy utensils were to be enamelled. It would be here that the best Jersey stock would be held, making it more convenient to control their care, and also more impressive when interested buyers came to view the herd.
As soon as Sir Robert approved the new outfit, foundations were laid and the work soon completed. The operations ran very smoothly, and it proved that the valuable jersey calves, which were fed pasteurised milk and oil cake, were better reared.
All he calves which had been transferred from Haldon Hill had greatly improved, and Mr. Champneys felt the whole turn out is one of the most pleasing aspects on the Estate.
Always looking to improve the Jersey herd another five cows arrived, and in an attempt to display the best of the stock a Jersey Parade was organised. Attended by one hundred and forty people, 288 of the best pedigree Jerseys were put on show enticing many of the onlookers to procure good bloodlines for their own herds.
The greatest loss to the Estate was the death of the bull Combination Jack. In 1908 the then studmaster, Jimmy Henwood exhibited Jack on behalf of Kameruka, at the Royal Sydney show. Mr. Henwood had led he famous bull, presumably on foot, to Tathra for the steamer passage to sydney and on arrival, from Circular Quay to the showground. The investment in Jack was more than rewarded by him winning grand Champion. Sire to many valuable progeny, the bull succumbed to a bowel inflammation and upon inspection it was found that a piece of hoopiron, a nail and a lead washer had led to the downfall of this great beast.
Jerseys to the value of six hundred and thirty five pound were sold to South Australian, Victorian, New South Wales and Queensland buyers and Mr Graham, the Chief Dairy Export of Queensland visited Kameruka and purchased twelve head of young Jersey heifers for the Department of Agriculture and Stock in Brisbane. The Estate also made a purchase of its own when it acquired the bull Mystifier from a clearance sale at Mr Manning`s property for ninety guineas.
In 1935 a ranch of the Australian Jersey Herd Society was formed on the Far South Coast with Bega as its headquarters. A Field Day was held at Kameruka with the chief objective being the inspection on the Estates cattle members of the Society.
It was largely attended by breeders and other interested residents from a wide area of the South Coast. In all two hundred and thirty two head of Estate pedigree Jersey cattle were classed and paddocked in seven small areas, providing an interesting and educational display which was much appreciated by the visitors.
Kings Vale Stud at Lyndhurst, from 1996 Ripplebrook, Victoria, Australia
100 Years Showing at Melbourne Royal 1896-1996
It doesn`t take much milking of the history books to find the Anderson family of Gippsland is legendary in dairy circles.
The family will consolidate the legend this year when its Jersey stud, first established in 1886, celebrates exhibiting at the Royal Melbourne Show 100 years on.
The stud`s story includes connections with governors , cows shipped from British Islands and five generations later, Andersons still breeding and milking cows under the original stud prefix Kings Vale.
The innovator was John Anderson. He set sail from famineridden Ireland on board the James T. Ford with his newly married wife Margaret, arriving in Australia on May 2, 1851.
It is said the James T`s final stopover was Alderney, a British owned island off the French coast, where the ship`s four-legged milk suppliers were collected.
Winsome Anderson, the family historian and wife of John`s now deceased great grandson, Bert, said the cows were to form the origins of Australia`s current Jersey herd.
"Hear say says that John also supplied milk and butter to the governor and we still have the Crown stamp they used on the butter," said Winsome.
"We think that`s where the King`s part of the King`s Vale stud came from."
It was Johns sons, Joseph and Richard, who first exhibited King`s Vale stud cattle at the Royal Melbourne Show in 1896.
That year John`s bull, Sylvanus, won first prize in the two-year old bull category and Richard`s bull, Duke of Barholme, claimed second prize in the one-year-old bull category.
We still have the first prize card, said Winsome proudly.
"The only reason it was kept was that they drew up their house renovations on the back of the card."
Over in the dairy produce section, Rebecca Anderson, sister of Joseph and Richard was doing her bit for the family name. She won first prize for the best powdered or fresh butter while Joseph fared third.
From th e turn of the century through to the 1930s, the Anderson namewas synonymous with blue-ribbon Jersey bulls at the show.
In those years Ayrshires and Jerseys drew the biggest numbers of entries, bulls were big time since there was no artificial insemination, provisions were meagre at the showgrounds and the family took their own fodder, firewood and tent.
In the early days Andersons Jerseys walked to the Lyndhurst railway to be trucked to the showgrounds.
Now, Holsteins dominate the dairy breeds, fodder can be bought at the showgrounds, cow titles claim bigger kudos than bulls and kitchen facilities are available.
Joseph`s son, John Sime Anderson, followed him into the ring, while Richard dispersed his stud and became a show judge.
King`s Vale cattle claimed reserve champion cow titles in 1943, 1950, 1952, 1959 and in 1953 King`s Vale Raider won champion bull.
In the period 1948-1957 Kings Vale was the most Successful exhibitor at the Melbourne RAS nine times out of the possible ten.
Together John Sime`s sons, John Charles (Jock) and Bert, continued to run the King`s Vale stud until 1961 when they dissolved their partnership. John kept the King`s Vale prefix and Bert registered Kings View.
Tradition continues. Today John Charles`s son, David Anderson, and his wife Sharon continue the King`s Vale herd at Ripplebrook, near Drouin, and Bert`s three sons, Robert, Lindsay and Ian, have registered Jersey studs with the Kings prefix.
Robert and Kerry have Kings Ville at Nar Nar Goon, Ian has Kins View, also at Nar Nar Goon, and Lindsay and Jacinta run King`s Vista at Athlone.
Kings View was most succesful exhibitor 1978 and also in 1879, winning 8 firsts, 2 seconds, 5 thirds and 4 fourths in an entry of 326.
Strong show blood also continues to pump through the different family branches, especially dominating the bull classes.
Since the show resumed after World War II, the family`s studs have claimed 26 champion and reservechampion ribbons at Melbourne. Since 1896 there have been 10 champion bull and two champion cow titles.
The Australian Jersey Journal, September 1996
Brief history of Kings Vale
1851 Emigrants John and Margaret Anderson arrive in Melbourne and establish a dairy herd. The Rosella family is reputed to have orginated from Ships Cows.
1886 Joseph Anderson son of the above establishes Kings Vale at Lyndhurst.
1921 The retirement of Joseph allows his son John and wife Kate to carry on the family tradition.
1947 After the deathe of John, the stud continues to prosper with John (Jock) and Bert sons of John and Kate.
1961 The partnership between Jock and Bert is dissolved, the farm and herd divided. Jock carries on Kings Vale and Bert and Winsome establish Kings View.
1987. Bert passes away.
1989 The Kings View herd is divided between the 3 sons of Bert
Lindsay Kings Vista at Athlone
Ian Kings View at Nar Nar Goon
Robert Kings Ville at Nar Nar Goon
1988 Jock passed away. Kings Vale is carried on by Ken and David sons of Jock.
1993. Kings Vale sale of the milking herd. The heifers, young stock and breeder cows retained.
1996 Kings Vale new farm at Ripplebrook carried on by David and Sharon Anderson.
The writer [Winsome Anderson] also has her own Jersey stud Kayvee because I wanted to retain an interest in the Jerseys. The Kayvee herd is domiciled at Nar Nar Goon. I bought a Kings Vale Brunette and Linda at the 1993 sale, both dropped heifers which went on to win 2nd and 3rd ?? At the Royal Melbourne 1996 show.
The estate of Bert R. Anderson still owns 41 hectres of the original property at Lyndhurst, the portion sold in 1988 is being mined for sand.
We still run the dry Jerseys and young stock on the old farm at Lyndhurst.
Do hope this information is of interest to you, and now you know why I am so involved with the Jersey Breed.
Letter from Winsome Anderson, dated 15. 2. 1998
Herds in Costa Rica
The first Jersey bulls were imported from California in 1873. A few years later some more Jerseys from Kentucky were imported. More cattle were imported from Jersey this same time. Initially, this is how the Jimenez Maldonado family secured some Jerseys from Don Manuel de Jesus to establish a farm near San Juan, these farms/herds are now owned by the Robert family. Other herds located on Coliblanco were those of Jose R. Gonzales Soto (in 1889) and El Planton of the J. Sanchez Jimenez family in 1906. El Planton used a bull Abigail of Hillside Son in the 1930s. Abigail of Hillside was a U.S. Champion producer. Another herd "La Giralda" was established in 1909 by Don Rafael A. Fernandez Soto near Barva Volcano.
Litt: Jersey in Costa Rica 1991
Highland Farms, Inc., Cornish, Maine, USA
"Highland Farm was established with registered Jerseys in 1886. We are the oldest registered Jersey herd in the United States. Many of our present cow families trace back to the original cow purchased in 1886. Highland Farm is the birthplace of Highland Magic Duncan and Highland Duncan Lester.
..................................................................Sincereky yours Allaire P. Palmer"
Letter from Allaire P. Palmer
Highland Generator O. Delores - Her son: Highland Magic Duncan
Two registered Jersey cows were purchased from George Blanchard herd at Cumberland Center, Maine, to begin the Highland Jersey herd in 1886. They were Perty W. 41721 and Guilet W 40984.
Six individual farms were conjoined so that today Highland Farms encompasses 1.200 acres, with 980 acres of woodland and the rest in open land used for corn, hay crops and pasture.
Five generations of the Pike family have owned and operated Highland Farms. Robert S. became the sole owner of HIghland Farms in 1937. His son, Robert L., joined the operation in 1956, followed a year later by his daughter and son-in-law, Allaire and John Palmer. The operation was incorporated in 1962 with Robert S. as president. David W. Pike (Robert L.´s son) and Libby Bleakney and Dan Palmer (children of Allaire and John) later come into the family corporation. The sixth generation consists of five great-grandchildren of Robert S.
The Jersey herd at Highland Farms is unique for the fact that there are twentieth-generation descendants of Perty W. in the herd today. From this fountainhead came six cow families now well-known to Jersey breeders: the Alettas, Jeans, Fernettas, Candys, Miss Lettys and Winnifreds
During the first 50 years of operation, just 49 animals, including the forerunners of the Kitsy and Radio families, were purchased. The growth and improvement of the highland herd can thus be directly attributed to the breeding and management expertise of the Pike family.
Important cow families have since been developed from females purchased in 1941 Delores, 1966 Sara, 1971 Spice and 1980 Nelly Bly.
HIghland Farms was quick to adopt the USDA predicted difference sire summaries when they were introduced in 1967. As was noted in the farm´s september, 1986 Jersey Journal ad, "We desperately needed more milk." The selection of such highly-rated bulls as H.L. Toronto Secret Orator, Noblemans Lotus Designer and Normsland Belle Boy headed the breeding program in the right direction.
Then came Observer Chocolate Soldier. According to that same ad, "He lifted up Highland Farms with 150 births and they freshened from 1971 to 1981.
Highland continued the use of high predicted difference bulls, and production gains were impressive. Briarcliffs Brave Soldier, Generator HL Earl and Quicksilvers Magic of Ogston were heavily used sires of the late 1970s, to be followed by Briarcliffs Soldier Boy, A-Nine Top Brass and Yankee FW Chief.
The success of HIghland Jerseys sold through state and regional sales spread the farm´s reputation far beyond New England.
At the same time, sire proving groups and AI organisations started to buy Highland bulls for sampling. The oldest of these was a Chocolate Soldier son from the Winnifred family, HIghland Observer Spirit. Spirit was proven and released for active service by Eastern AI Cooperative.
The next bull to be proven outside of the herd was Highland Magic Duncan.
Born on September 1, 1980, this calf by Quicksilver Magic of Ogston out of an excellent Generator from the Delores family was selected by Jerseyland Sires in its second group of bulls. His wasn´t the highest Pedegree Index of the 10 bulls chosen that year, but today Duncan is a breed phenomeon. He held first place in every yield trait category on the USDA Sire Summary, and also is the high active AI bull for Predicted Difference for Type (1987).
Highland Duncan Lester and his family. It is exciting to know that Lester´s maternal line does go back to our original cow family that was purchased in 1886. Perty W 41721 blessed Highland Farms with 10 daughters and one son. Her eleventh calf was named Perty Kit and from this line 17 generations later came Highland Duncan Lester.
Lester´s fame comes from his ability to sire daughters that are strong, good uddered, high producing, rich in components with excellent dispositions and generally all that dairy producers desire in their Jerseys.
At Highland there aren´t the one or two great daughters that really stand out; it´s just daughter after daughter we like that show Highland Duncan Lester´s strong points.
Highland Farms has had the pleasure to host several groups of national and international visitors and they all liked their Lester daughters.
Biltmore Farms, North Carolina, USA
William K. Vanderbilt a grandson of old Commodore Vanderbilt, was admirer of the Jersey breed. He joined the American Jersey Cattle Club in February 1883. His farm was at Oakdale, New York. He was born on Staten Island on Dember 12, 1849, and he died in Paris July 22, 1920. He had been president of the New York Central Railroad, but towards the end of his life he devoted much of his time to philanthropy, doing, with his wife, much hospital work abroad during the first world war. He contributed $40.000 to the Neuilly Hospital, and $200.000 towards war relief in Italy. In 1909 he gave $1.000.000 to build model tenement houses in New York City for tuberculosis sufferers. In 1913 he gave $100.000 to the Young Men´s Christian Association, and in 1914 $113.750 to Columbia University to buy half a block for additional University grounds. He, with others of the family, founded the Vanderbilt Clinic in New York City, at a cost of $500.000. These are only a few of Mr. Vanderbilt´s beneficences in his lifetime. The name Vanderbilt has long been associated with great wealth, and the owners of much money are usually regarded as the fortunate and happy people of the world. William K. Vanderbilt said in 1905: "My life was never destined to be quite happy. It was laid along lines which I could not foresee, almost from earliest childhood. It has left me with nothing to hope for, with nothing definite to seck or strive for. Inherited wealth is a big handicap to happiness. It is as certain death to ambition as cocaine is to morality." Several members of the Vanderbilt family have been members of the American Jersey Cattle Club at different periods from 1883 and forward.
William K. Vanderbilt´s brother George W. was the builder of Biltmore in North Carolina and founder of the Biltmore herd.
George Washington Vanderbilt Born in 1862, George Washington Vanderbilt showed an intellectual and quiet disposition at a young age. His curiosity and cultural interests took him across the globe, and it is during his travels that he came to Asheville, North Carolina, in the late 1880s. Enchanted with the area, he acquired land for the future Biltmore Estate, and contracted architect Richard Morris Hunt and landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted to collaborate on the ambitious project. Married three years after the completion of Biltmore House, George Vanderbilt brought his bride, Edith Stuyvesant Dresser to her new home in 1898. A daughter, Cornelia, was born in 1900. George Vanderbilt was active in the maintenance of the Estate until his untimely death following an appendectomy in 1914.
When George Washington Vanderbilt welcomed family and friends to Biltmore Estate on Christmas Eve in 1895, his holiday celebration marked the formal opening of the most ambitious home ever conceived in America. For six years an army of artisans had labored to create a country estate that would rival the great manors of Europe and embody the finest in architecture, landscape planning, and interior design. The results were astonishing.
Boasting four acres of floor space, the 250-room mansion featured 34 master bedrooms, 43 bathrooms, 65 fireplaces, three kitchens, and an indoor swimming pool. It was appointed with a priceless collection of furnishings and art works and equipped with every conceivable amenity, from elevators to refrigerators. The surrounding grounds were equally impressive, encompassing a 125,000-acres of forest, park, and gardens.
The youngest in a family renowned for building palatial homes, 33-year-old George Vanderbilt had outdone them all.
In addition to being used for entertaining, Biltmore was very much a home. It was here that George pursued his private interests in art, literature, and horticulture, and also started a family. He married the American socialite Edith Stuyvesant Dresser (1873-1958) in June 1898 in Paris, and the couple came to live at the Estate that fall after honeymooning in Europe. Their only child, Cornelia (1900-1976), was born and grew up at Biltmore.
But what a brave new world it was in 1890 when George Vanderbilt began planning for his 250-room Biltmore Estate, situated on 125,000 acres of over-farmed Blue Ridge terrain. He had grown up along New York’s Fifth Avenue and had already, at age 28, traveled the world. In 1892 at the Columbian Exposition in Chicago, he witnessed firsthand an explosion of ideas. He had, in other words, stood at the edge of a new century and seen the future--a world propelled by technology and invention.
Vanderbilt’s belief in the technological achievements of his day is evident throughout Biltmore Estate, where he employed the latest, most up-to-date systems and innovation. From the incorporation of electricity, central heat and indoor plumbing to the inclusion of some of the earliest Otis elevators in America, a sophisticated call system for servants and an indoor drying chamber for laundry. Vanderbilt’s mansion showcased the best thinking of his time.
Beginning June 12, an exhibition entitled The Comforts of Home: Turn of the Century Technology at Biltmore Estate will let modern-day guests examine the ingenuity which made Biltmore House a wonder when it was completed in 1895.
Mr. Vanderbilt’s guests were largely unaware of the many innovations of the Estate. They simply enjoyed their benefits. One such guest was Mrs. George Vanderbilt’s sister, Pauline Dresser Merrill, who visited Biltmore often. In March 1905, she posted a letter to a close friend who lived near Mrs. Merrill’s home in Buffalo, NY. the letter describes in vivid detail her time at Biltmore—where she stayed what the course of her day was like, the specifics of dining in the huge Banquet Hall.
This letter, recently acquired by Biltmore Estate, becomes a fascinating storytelling vehicle for The Comforts of Home exhibition. By tracing the day she describes, guests to the exhibition will be able to glimpse behind the scenes at the various technologies implemented both in preparation for her visit and during her stay—all designed to make her time with her sister, Edith, and her brother-in-law George Vanderbilt, a pleasurable experience.
The exhibition, located on the third floor of Biltmore House, will feature examinations of the various systems in the home, including the electrical, heating and plumbing systems. Replications of several rooms—the laundry, the bedroom where Mrs. Merrill was a guest, the Banquet Hall and Butler’s Pantry—as well as interpretations of the Otis dumbwaiter and the two Otis elevators in the house, are in the display. The elevators, one passenger and the other a freight elevator, are thought to be the oldest operating electric models in the U.S. Otis Elevator Company the American company which pioneered the development of vertical transportation systems, is sole sponsor of the exhibition at Biltmore Estate.
The exhibition is offered as part of a regular visit to Biltmore Estate, which includes a self-guided tour of Biltmore House, a visit to Biltmore Estate Winery, and access to the grounds and gardens, the work of America’s premiere landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted.
Biltmore Estate, a National Historic Landmark, is a private home, still owned by George Vanderbilt’s grandson, William Cecil. It is open to the public year-round except on Thanksgiving and Christmas Days.
In 1891 George Washington Vanderbilt became a member of the American Jersey Cattle Club. He registered his first animal Duke of Biltmore in 1891. Until Biltmore, in North Carolina was completed he maintained his Jerseys in New York. Production started to increase beyond what could be given away, so he began bottling and selling milk also butter. The butter was churned by a bull walking on a treadmill.
The herd was moved to Biltmore a few years later, with the main barn being completed only in 1902. Other than Jersey, no where were there more offspring of Golden Lad than in the Biltmore herd.
Over the years the dairy business became larger and more modernized. The quality of Biltmore ice cream was outstanding. Eventually the milk operations were sold to Pet Milk Inc. in rail cars. They had both Grand Champion cow (Signal Bess Jane) and bull in 1952, the last year they showed.
Biltmore Signal Bess Jane
After a corporate reorganization in 1979, most of the herd was sold. Two hundred head were retained by Mr. George Cecil, Mr. George Cecil, Mr. Vanderbilt´s grandson, for establishing a Jersey herd off the Biltmore Estate. This herd continues to flourish and Mr. Cecil´s daughter has also established a new herd of Jerseys.
As the other 100 year plus Jersey herds had an impact on the breed, so did Biltmore. A cow Biltmore Earl Bee was sold carrying a calf who became Soldierboy Bloomer Sooner of CJF, the production sire of the 1990s. Bee was a direct female descendant of Signal Bess Jane and also of Nelly the 14th Jersey recorded in the AJCC herd book.
Bee” was purchased in the 1982 Lifetime Opportunity Sale as a 2-year-old by Ellis Woods and Sons. She was carrying “Sooner.” She was always a very aggressive cow, never afraid to push her way through to the feed bunk. This shows through her +9,000M deviation over herdmates in the Biltmore herd of 700 cows! This has transmitted through the generations!
Biltmore Earl Bee has touched nearly every herd in the United States –With over 19,000 granddaughters just through her son “Sooner” and nearly 12,000 greatgranddaughters through his son, “Berretta” – “Bee” has proven to be a transmitting giant.
Her offspring at Biltmore:
Biltmore Brigadier Bee Excellent-90%
6-7 305 20,430 733 724 And her daughter:
Biltmore Barber Bee Very Good-85% On her first lactation and milking extremely well!
Meadow Lawn, Markham, Ontario-very close to Toronto, Canada
With regard to long-established Jersey herds in Canada we are quite sure that the Meadown Lawn herd owned by Barry Little of Markham, Ontario-very close to Toronto is the oldest herd still in existence in Canada. The herd was established by members of the family of Mr. Little's mother in 1891.
Meadow Lawn J IMPERIAL
Schoongezicht Jersey Herd, South Africa
Rustenberg has a wine-growing history dating back to 1682, when Roelof Pasman from Meurs, near the Rhine, recognised its wine-growing potential.
By 1781 some 50 leaguers of wine were produced on the farm (1 leaguer = 570 litres), doubling to 100 by the end of the century, when a new cellar was built. Wine has been bottled at this cellar for an unbroken period since 1892.
In the early 1800's Rustenberg was divided by owner Jacob Eksteen and a section given to his son-in-law, who named it Schoongezicht and sold it soon after.
Rustenberg and Schoongezicht were at their peak around 1812, with beautiful homesteads and flourishing vineyards. But by mid-century, recession coupled with disease in the vines, brought bankruptcy and dispossession.
Since 1682, when the land was first granted, Rustenberg has been a working farm, linked to soil and pasture.
Apart from wine, Rustenberg is also known for its champion jerseys. Our Schoongezicht jersey herd dates back to 1892 and is the oldest registered herd in South Africa.
Their names are chosen by Pamela Barlow, who with her late husband Peter, established the pedigree herd from Jersey, Canadian, American and New Zealand bloodlines.
The trophy-winning Schoongezicht herd now numbers 570 animals, with the bulls in demand for stud and the cows known as high producers:
a daily average yield is 19 litres of milk per cow.
The new streamlined, specially-designed milking parlour boasts the latest automated milking equipment, while a gallery allows visitors to watch the cows file unerringly into their accustomed places. This vantage point also provides a spectacular view of the Rustenberg vineyards.
Mr. Douglas Houston states in a brochure of the Schoongezicht Jerseys: "The Schoongezicht Jersey herd was born when in 1892 the late Alfred Nicholson joined John X. Merriman. From that time until today, though wine and fruit too have helped to make the name of Schoongezicht famous throughout South Africa, the Jersey has played a vital role in the economy of the farm".
Mr. Houston continues: "There are few records of the first Jerseys, but it is of interest to note that the earliest records refer to a bull called Adrian, bred by Adrian van der Byl. He arrived at Schoongezicht in 1904, and has therefore the strongest claim to be known as the father of the herd."
According to W.A.K. Morkel: "Messrs J.X. Merriman and A. Nicholson built up their Schoongezicht herd on the original stock obtained from Adrian van der Byl."
Among the cows became Schoongezicht Paulette 6667 famous, she was the first Jersey cow in South Africa to have been awarded the 100.000 lb milk club certificate and the three-ton-of-butterfat award. She also held the lifetime champion certificate for both milk and butterfat.
The object has always been to grade up the herd to one of pure Jersey breeding. Messrs. Merriman and Nicholson registered 13 cows, born during the period 1913 to 1921, in the Appendix Section of Volume 1 of the South African Jersey Herd Book.
This herd was consequently also bred up through the Appendix Section into the Stud Book proper with very good imported, and Elsenburg and Willowtree-bred, registered bulls. It numbered cows in 1924, with quite a number in the appendix section.
Their main object has been high milk and butte