This morning, the state honored two Illinois farm families at its Ag Day breakfast whose farms have been in business and in family hands since before Illinois was a state.
The Wiseman Family of Bellmont in Wabash County and the Brown Family of Jonesboro in Union County are the only two bicentennial families recognized thus far. However, the Illinois Department of Agriculture says its research reveals at least nine bicentennial farms founded and in family hands since before 1818.
The recognition coincides with Ag Day at the Illinois State Fair.
The Centennial Farm program, created in 1972, recognizes farms that are at least 100 (centennial), 150 (sesquicentennial), and 200 (bicentennial) years old. Though the state was settled in the southernmost region first, according to the Illinois Farm Bureau, there is a density of historic farms right here in Central Illinois.
The state of Illinois will add its 10,000th farm to the roster this year, the state’s bicentennial year.
Click the video to learn more about the importance of Centennial Farm designations.
To consider recognizing your farm as a Centennial Farm, visit the Illinois Farm Programs web site for a list of the qualifications.
Also be sure to check out the festivities connected to Illinois @ 200.