HOOSIER HOMESTEADERS HONORED. The Indiana Department of Agriculture recently honored Thomas D. Thompson and Vera M. Lear of Parke as Centennial Hoosier Homestead farm families. They were among 55 families honored at the Indiana Statehouse. (photo submitted)
At the Indiana Statehouse recently, Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch and Indiana State Department of Agriculture Director Bruce Kettler presented 55 families with a Hoosier Homestead Award, recognizing their commitment to Indiana agriculture.
To be named a Hoosier Homestead, farms must be owned by the same family for more than 100 consecutive years, consist of 20 acres or more, or produce more than $1,000 in agricultural products per year.
“Agriculture is very much a family affair, with roughly 97% of farms family-owned and operated nationwide,” Crouch said. “For generations, these families have been foundational to the social and economic advancement of Indiana, and recognizing their legacy today was a tremendous honor.”
Families are eligible for three different distinctions of the Hoosier Homestead Award based on the age of the farm. They can receive the Centennial Award for 100 years, Sesquicentennial Award for 150 years or Bicentennial Award for 200 years of ownership.
Since the program’s inception in 1976, more than 5,500 families have received the award.
“It takes hard work and perseverance to keep a family farm a continued success for so many years,” Kettler said. “This award is a testament to the resiliency of these farmers, as well as their longstanding commitment to Indiana, agriculture and family.”
The March 2019 Hoosier Homestead Award recipients included: Thomas D. Thompson and Vera M Lear from Parke County, 1886 Centennial Award; Redman Farms, Vermillion County, 1914, Centennial; Hughes Farms, Vermillion County, 1834, Sesquicentennial; Goff-Clark Farms, Montgomery County, 1912, Centennial; Alcorn Farms, Putnam County, 1918, Centennial; Kessell Farms, Vigo County 1901, Centennial award; and Fred L. Wilson, Jr., Vigo County, 1817, Sesquicentennial and Bicentennial.