The Foster Farm

A family farm is a treasure. I grew up working with my uncle and grandfather on small cattle farms outside Pocahontas and Dalton, AR. I married into a family that has farmed land in the "bootheel" of Missouri for generations. When Zach Foster asked me to document a farmhouse on their family farm, I jumped at the opportunity. Normally, I try to write a nice piece on what I've photographed, but this time Zach has said it best:

Farming is a trade that has been with my family name since the Fosters first immigrated to the United States in the early 1800s. I didn't understand its importance at first, but as I've grown up I know that my family farm is something to be very proud of. This house was already standing when my great-grandparents first bought this land. Though we don't know its actual age, it is projected to be around 100 years old. As time goes by, the land on this farm will still be around but this house will not. This old structure may not be standing by the end of next month.

I remember coming out to the farm with dad when I was a kid. I would go into the house to walk through rooms, rummage in drawers and look around in dusty closets. Most of the time I'd only find dirt dauber nests and old clothes that had been eaten up by moths. But it was just neat old stuff like the rusty beds and worn down furniture that I thought was so cool. It was fun to explore and dig around in. I remember finding an old matchbox truck and my dad saying, “Hey! That used to be mine when I was a kid!” Memories like those will stay with me forever.

I'm not nearly as involved in farming as my dad, grandpa or great-grandpa were. I almost feel guilty for having such a great inheritance and not knowing much about it. But even though I currently don't have a working hand with this farm, I'm very sentimental with it. Understanding that this farm will one day belong to my sister Makenzie, and me, we have both become more interested in how the farm works and what we can do to be prepared to manage the farm when it falls into our name.   

I didn't understand its importance at first, but as I've grown up I know that my family farm is something to be very proud of.

So this house, I guess, was a connection that I've made to the farm. It’s a personal experience that I had growing up and something that I will always remember. Whenever I think about the farm, I'll think about this house. Documenting it is important to me because I'll now have perfect memories kept within in beautifully printed photography. But something I care about even more is that my kids and grandkids will now be able to see this house, also. Hopefully through these pictures they will not only understand my connection with the farm but see a genuine piece of our family’s history. I hope that they will not lose sight of where our family came from and will forever be proud of what we have.

Thanks again, Zach, for the privilege of documenting this landmark of passion, hard work and family.