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Hoosier Centennial Farms Honored


Hoosier Centennial Farms Honored

Sue Ellspermann
Sue Ellspermann

Each year at the Indiana State Fair, Indiana farms that have been in the family for more than 100 years are honored with the Hoosier Homestead Award. Lt. Governor Sue Ellspermann said this is the heritage of rural Indiana and shows our state’s farmers are family farms, “Today we celebrate the agricultural heritage of our farming families. We salute their innovation, their determination, and their dedication, which have allowed them to succeed for more than a century—here’s to at least 100 more successful years!” She told HAT that recent action to eliminate the inheritance tax will be a big help in keeping farms in the family and helping with the passing of farms from one generation to another.


“As the practices of agriculture continue to evolve, families like those honored at today’s ceremony remind us of the deep cultural roots farming has in our state,”  said ISDA director Gina Sheets.  “Although business and technology play a significant role in farming, the recipients of the Hoosier Homestead Award show us that agriculture is ultimately about family and community.”



A J Booher from Tippecanoe County
A J Booher from Tippecanoe County

A J Booher from Tippecanoe County is the 6th generation to farm his land, “Our farm started in 1897, and it has always been a part of our family. I cannot imagine doing anything else.” He feel confident the farm will continue to be farmed and in the family for many years to come.  He thinks it is important for one generation to train the next and then, when it is time, move out of the way and let them take over.


Dean Scott from Carroll County, whose farm has been in the family since 1905, told HAT it is getting harder and harder to keep a farm in the family, “My son has been farming with us for the past several years, and we have done some estate planning to make it possible for him to take over the farm in the future.”


Ted Huber from Clark County said his farm is best known for the Huber Wine it  produces, but it all started over 150 years ago as a fruit farm, “My great- great grandfather started farming with apples and grapes, and we will produce these today.”  It has been a good week for the Huber family as their wine won a major award at the International Wine Competition at Purdue.


To be named a Hoosier Homestead, farms must be owned by the same family for more than 100 consecutive years and consist of more than 20 acres or produce more than $1,000 of agricultural products per year. On Wednesday,  42 families received centennial awards, 14 families were recognized with sesquicentennial (150 year) awards, and two families celebrated more than 200 years of Hoosier farming.  More than 500 attendees packed the Farm Bureau Auditorium at the Indiana State Fair, including family members traveling from as far away as San Antonio, TX and Atlanta, GA.  Attendees’ ages also spanned 100 years, from newborns to Sylven Gerber of Bluffton who was born on his family’s Adams County farm over 99 years ago.


Hoosier Homestead Awards

County farm location Date Local Contact
Adams Decatur 1912 Donald Erxleben
Adams Bluffton 1880 Jerry L. Gerber
Allen Ft. Wayne 1871 Lois Barrett
Allen Ft. Wayne 1913 Evan Beebe
Bartholomew Columbus 1879 Debra Flohr
Bartholomew Columbus 1881 Rebecca Mobley
Bartholomew Columbus 1908 Scott Maley
Blackford 1838 June Butler Ladd
Blackford Montpelier 1909 Nixon Kelsay
Boone Sheridan 1887 Martha Rockey
Carroll Bringhurst 1905 Mary Anna Scott
Carroll Camden 1888 Monica Scott
Clark Nabb 1813 Terry Graves
Clark Starlight 1859 Jan Huber
Clinton Frankfort 1912 John Crum
Clinton Frankfort 1902 Janet Dorsey
Clinton Frankfort 1911 Garry Frey
Fayette Connersville 1813 David Caldwell
Fulton Rochester 1906 Stephen Rans
Gibson Haubstadt 1867 Skyler Epperson
Gibson Cynthiana 1845 Skyler Epperson
Harrison Corydon 1869 Ken Veron
Hunington Warren 1843 Audra Kay Riggers
Jackson Seymour 1906 William Thompson
Jasper Brook 1889 Myron Hitchings
Jasper Rensselear 1913 Allen Toben
Jay Portland 1902 Nancy Strait
Kosciusko Claypool 1913 Martha Hoffman
LaPorte Michigan City 1861 Shirley Kurtzhals
LaPorte Michigan City 1904 John Zink
Marshall Plymouth 1863 John Behmer
Miami Macy 1907 Curtis Mills
Miami Macy 1900 Gary L. Raber
Morgan Martinsville 1911 Warren J. Goss
Newton Kentland 1900 Walter Dewing Jr.
Posey Mt. Vernon 1862 Charles Ries
Pulaski Medaryville 1863 Robert M. White
Putnam Putnam 1840 John B. Michael
Randolph Randolph 1910 Mickey Carpenter
Ripley Batesville 1912 Joseph Schumacker
Ripley Osgood 1911 Syalvester Young
Rush Manilla 1887 Gerald Kessler
Starke North Judson 1913 Lynn Seghetti
Switzerland Bennington 1843 Judith Bradford Kappes
Switzerland Bennington 1848 Judith Bradford Kappes
Tippecanoe West Lafayette 1897 Anthony Booher
Tippecanoe West Lafayette 1892 Janet Nesbitt
Tippecanoe New Richmond 1913 Mark Nesbitt
Tipton Tipton 1863 Lou Nash
Wabash Urbana 1913 Brad Eads
Wabash North Manchester 1910 Ken Metzger
Warren Williamsport 1905 Ellen Wright
Warren Williamsport 1865 Ellen Wright
Wells Bluffton 1905 Dell Shady
Wells Keystone 1860 C. Benjamin Smith
White Monon 1910 Robert Rice
Whitley Columbia City 1863 Deloris Ware