FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 30, 2008
CONTACT: Caneta Hankins, 615-898-2947
STATE PROGRAM RECOGNIZES HENDERSON COUNTY FARM FOR CONTRIBUTIONS
102-Year-Old McBride Farm Becomes County’s Newest & 5th Century Farm
(MURFREESBORO)—The McBride Farm in Henderson County recently was designated as a Tennessee Century Farm, reported Caneta S. Hankins, director of the Century Farms Program at the Center for Historic Preservation, which is located on the MTSU campus.
According to the farm’s history, in 1906, James Franklin McBride bought a small farm of 49 acres south of Lexington. Married to Martha Gower McBride, the couple had five children: Lessie, Allie, Jonas, Paul and Phillip. A diverse farming operation, the family raised corn, cotton, beef cattle, swine and hay.
The second and current owner of the farm is the founder’s grandson, Charles McBride. He and wife Joyce Presley McBride are the parents of Mickie Ratliff, Tina Hahn and Marsha Crowell. On acreage added over the years, Charles produces corn, beef cattle and hay.
Charles has been an active member of the farm bureau since 1962, and from 1967 to 2002, he served as its advisory director. Since 2002, he has served as the Henderson County Farm Bureau’s director. His wife Joyce serves as the Henderson County Farm Bureau women’s director chair.
“The McBride Farm is the fifth Century Farm to be certified in Henderson County,” Hankins noted.
The Century Farm Program recognizes the contributions of Tennessee residents who have continuously owned, and kept in production, family land for at least 100 years. Since 1984, the CHP at MTSU has been a leader in the important work of documenting Tennessee’s agricultural heritage and history through the Tennessee Century Farm Program, and continues to administer this program.
The Tennessee Department of Agriculture began the Tennessee Century Farm Program in 1976 as part of the nation’s bicentennial. Today, the TDA provides a metal outdoor sign denoting either 100, 150 or 200 years of “continuous agricultural production” to Century Farm families.
To be considered for eligibility, a farm must be owned by the same family for at least 100 years; must produce $1,000 revenue annually; must have at least 10 acres of the original farm; and one owner must be a resident of Tennessee.
“The Century Farmers represent all the farm families of Tennessee,” Hankins said, “and their contributions to the economy, and to the social, cultural and agrarian vitality of the state, both past and present, is immeasurable. Each farm is a Tennessee treasure.”
For more information about the Century Farms Program, please visit its Web site at http://histpres.mtsu.edu/histpres. The Center for Historic Preservation also may be contacted via mail at Box 80, MTSU, Murfreesboro, Tenn., 37132, or by telephone at 615-898-2947.
ATTENTION, MEDIA: To interview the farm’s owner or request a jpeg of the farm for editorial use, please contact the CHP directly at 615-898-2947.