For greater than 150 years, the Buhr family farm has been based mostly in the shadow of what’s now the cathedral in the corn — the Immanuel Lutheran Church in Flatville. The Buhr farm was began in 1871 — Ulysses S. Grant was president, the first Major League Baseball recreation was performed and the Great Chicago Fire devastated the Windy City. The church could be based three years later, with some of the Buhr ancestors amongst the founders. One of their descendants, Russell Buhr, explains the family farm operation.
How lengthy has your family been farming?
Farming in the Buhr family dates again to 1871, when my great-grandfather, Jann Buhr, bought our homestead from the railroad. In 2021, we had been acknowledged at the Illinois State Fair as a sesquicentennial farming family, that means now we have labored the similar farm floor for 150 years. In 1973, I started my very own operation whereas additionally working as a mechanic for the native implement sellers.
Where is your farm operation?
Our heritage farm is situated three-quarters of a mile east of Flatville. We are proud to nonetheless base our operation on the similar floor as our family did 150 years in the past. As Gordy Hannagan used to say, we’re farming in the shadow of the Flatville church steeple. Our ancestors are additionally some of the authentic founding members of Immanuel Lutheran Church from 1874, the place we nonetheless worship immediately. We are very blessed and lucky to have raised our family, and now our grandchildren, in the shadows of the church. We even have acreage outdoors of Flatville and Royal, whereas Andy just lately added a farm in rural Fithian.
What does your farming operation consist of?
Is it strictly a grain operation, or do you even have livestock?
For the previous 50 years, now we have been solely grain farmers: corn and soybeans. Previously, our family additionally had livestock: cattle, hogs, chickens and sheep.
How many individuals in the family does the operation help?
Years in the past, I labored the floor with my dad, Sief, and my brother, Steve. Dad retired in 1987, so Steve and I continued on the family farm collectively. Today, our primary work contributors are myself and my son, Andy, whereas my grandson, Max, just lately started operating the auger wagon for us throughout harvest. Our operation helps my spouse, Marilyn, and myself, in addition to my son Andy, his spouse, Missy, and their two kids, Max (11) and Annie (9).
Do you have got any members of the family in the farm operation additionally working different jobs?
I’m a co-chairman for the Half Century of Progress Show, which is held each different 12 months. I’m additionally the drainage commissioner for Spoon River. My spouse, Marilyn, is just lately retired from Gifford State Bank. My son, Andy, is the vice chairman of ag lending at the Gifford State Bank and can also be the Compromise Township supervisor. About 10 years in the past, he began a fabrication store, Flatland Design and Fabrication, the place he builds pulling tractors. My daughter-in-law, Missy, is the new Ag in the Classroom literacy coordinator for the Vermilion County Farm Bureau. My daughter and son-in-law, Michelle and Brad, and their two daughters, Ella and Adi, reside in Norman, Okla. Michelle is a second-grade trainer whereas Brad works for the University of Oklahoma.
How have you ever seen farming change over the years?
There have been many modifications from two- and four-row to 16- and 24-row gear. The expertise in seed traits — herbicides that after labored after which herbicide weed resistance. Other main modifications embody the neighborhoods. What was as soon as a farming homestead now are homes with out farms connected. So much of the space has modified from farm dwelling to nation dwelling.
Your farm gear: Green (John Deere), Red (Case IH) or different?
We have all of it! Case IH, International, John Deere, Ford, Versatile, Massey Ferguson, Minneapolis Moline and Kinze.
What makes farming such an excellent vocation?
It is a good way to lift a family and educate our kids good work ethics. It is nice understanding we’re instilling essential values into our subsequent generations. The tougher you’re employed, the extra you get forward in life.
If you possibly can change one factor about farming, what would it not be?
To reduce the huge swings in the markets, worth of inputs, price of equipment and rising taxes. No matter what sort of enterprise an individual owns, it ought to be capable to be handed all the way down to future generations with out big monetary ramifications.
What’s the finest time of 12 months to be on the farm?
We get pleasure from every season and the work related to them. Spring: getting the crops in the floor. Summer: tractor exhibits, county festivals, tractor pulls. Fall: lovely climate and harvest. Winter: loads of time in the store getting ready for the upcoming 12 months. But the better part is the quantity of time I get to spend with my family and understanding I’m able to be an enormous half of their life.
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