Porter and Martha Ann Claxton and their 5 children moved to the farm in 1976, It consisted of 60 acres with a small roadside cabin, an old tobacco barn, a shed with milking parlor, a spring house, and an out-house all in ruin. They built a log house and a pond. The land was cleared making pastures. A small herd of commercial cattle was converted to a Registered Herd of Polled Herefords.
Through the ensuing years a menagerie of animals was added. A tradition developed as Porter and the children gave Martha Ann different animals as a surprise present at Christmas. Many times the neighbors would help by hiding animals until Christmas Eve, and it was always the first question Christmas morning, “what did Martha Ann get this year”? These animals included sheep, goats, pigs, llamas, miniature horses and donkeys and a camel!
One year against her expressed wishes she thought that she had received a milk cow when the children painted black shoe polish on a white Charolais cow named Snowball making her look like a Holstein milk cow. A surprise for the ages, and an everlasting story that gets better every time it’s told.
Through the years the opportunity came up to acquire land adjacent to the farm. Always looking for more pasture for the cattle the farm grew to more than 500 acres. An additional pond was built by taking the top from a nearby hill. This resulted in a flat area we now call the Flat Top. This lies in front of another old tobacco barn. In 1997 Joe Lasher, M7 Events, saw this area while looking for a spot to have a picnic. He immediately recognized its potential for special events. The mountains and meadows surround the Flat Top and one feels the beauty of the site and in touch with nature. This is a unique experience that we are happy to share.
The farm’s ponds have been stocked for fishing and there are mountain hikes available. A farm manager’s house has been converted to a vacation house for rent.
Currently the Farm is very active with 150 Registered Polled Hereford cattle, Registered Miniature Horses and Llamas. These are available for private treaty sales and on-farm auction sales have been held every other year. School tours and birthday parties may be scheduled at the farm and M7 will arrange for any Special Event at the Flat Top.