The Janet and James McDonald Farm in Gratiot was recognized as a sesquicentennial farm at the 2014 Wisconsin State Fair on Tuesday, Aug. 5.
Started in 1863 by James McDonald’s great-great grandfather, also named James McDonald, the farm is located on County Highway K in Gratiot. The farm used to be both a beef and dairy operation, but now just operates as a crop farm.
At one time the farm sat at around 400 acres, but then in 1970 James and his brother John split the farm, with about 120 acres going to John and 280 staying with James and his wife Janet.
“It feels good [to be recognized as a sesquicentennial farm],” said James. “There’s not many around that old, and it feels good that we’ve stayed on it that long and kept the McDonald name with it,” he added.
The Sesquicentennial Farm & Home Award Program began in 1998 as part of the state’s sesquicentennial celebration. The program honors families who have had continuous ownership of their Wisconsin farm or home for 150 years or more.