11 June 2012

—1859, 1862 & 1874—
Cow Excerpts


A Valuable Cow
A gentleman of Dorchester, Mass., who has an excellent cow, has, at our request, furnished the following description of her, together with a statement of her yield of milk, &c., in a letter dated June 23, 1858:

“She was raised by me, on my estate in Dorchester, and is six years old this spring. Her dam was from the farm of Gov. Lincoln, or Worcester—a cross of a native cow with the progeny of the celebrated bull Denton, from the Williams farm in Northboro. Her sire was a full-blood Ayrshire. She has given, for the first twenty-one days in June, 436 quarts, or a fraction less than 21 quarts per day, beer measure, or 25 quarts wine measure. Weight of the milk, 1085-1/2, or 51 lbs. 10 oz. per day,—about her estimated weight on the hoof. The proportion of cream is 13 per cent. She has given us a little more than 10 lbs. of butter per week, besides the cream used for the family. She has had nothing but grass, and is milked regularly at 6 A.M. and 6 P.M.”

[Thomas’s Farmer's Almanac]

Good Points of a Cow
We offer the following doggerel lines, as combining what are popularly considered the good points of a cow, such as is commonly among the short-horned breed of Yorkshire:
She’s long in her face, she’s fine in her horn,
She’ll quickly get fat without cake or corn,
She’s clean in her jaws, and full in her chine,
She’s heavy in flank, and wide in her loin.

She’s broad in her ribs, and long in her rump,
A straight and flat back, without e’er a hump;
She’s wide in her hips, and calm in her eyes,
She’s fine in her shoulders, and thin in her thighs.

She’s light in her neck, and small in her tail,
She’s wide in her breast, and good at the pail;
She’s fine in her bone, and silky of skin,
She’s a grazier’s without, and a butcher’s within.
[Leavitt’s Farmer's Almanac]

Cows on Grass
The best food for a dairy cow is grass. There can be no doubt about that. It is as plain as the nose on a face.
[Thomas’s Farmer's Almanac]


Speaking of cows, my friend, Richard Grossman,  has started a new blog about raising Dexter and Kerry cattle on his fifth generation family farm in western Pennsylvania. You can read it here: The Craighill Herd of Kerry & Dexter Cattle.