Bryant and Pearl Cunningham began the purchase of farm land in 1941 with a vision for a dairy farm. A pharmacist and successful businessman, Cunningham formed a partnership which began the dairy cattle operation in 1946. The story tells of the many families who lived on the land before 1941 and the people who lived and farmed the land that became known as the Green Valley Dairy Farm.
Ardell Richardson became a partner with Cunningham in 1955. In 1958 the dairy became a registered "All Jersey Herd." Through select breeding and the purchase of Nancys Sleeping Advancer, the nation's top bull in the Jersey Breed, this dairy became one of the top herds in Tennessee. University of Tennessee Extension Dairymen worked heavily with this dairy and many other dairies to advance the state's dairy industry.
The author, Willard Richardson, had the privilege to know many people as a young boy on this dairy farm and then fifty years later was asked to tell their story and what became of the Green Valley Dairy, and the dairy industry.
The author relates a way of life on a dairy farm from 1946 to 1995. He tells how a family man was affected by the military draft and that eight young boys connected to the same farm served in the Vietnam war.
Through county agriculture agents and former U. of T. Extension Dairymen, the author discovered a once thriving dairy industry in Tennessee and the nation. There were 30 dairy farms near Atwood, Tennessee. There was a large participation and following of the dairy shows.
The family dairy farm and the dairy shows have reached "The Endangered Species" status.
The story tells what happened to the Green Valley Farm and the dairy industry. Theauthor recreates the dairy show's "Days of Shining Glory" at country fairs, the state fair, The Mid South Fair and the All American Shows. Former state cattle judges and U. of T. Professors and PHD's of Agriculture are remembered that were involved with junior showmen and the family dairy farms.
The Green Valley Farm was an all Oliver Farm Equipment user for many years. One of the Pioneers of "No-Till Farming" worked the land on this farm.
This story tells what became of the many families of The Green Valley Farm and what they are doing in 2004.
A Franklin D. Roosevelt "New Dealer" Barn still stands today on the Green Valley Farm as a testament to "The Depression Years" era. A tall upright silo still stands today near Opry Land just outside Nashville, Tennessee, like countless others, as a monument to the state and the nation's once thriving dairy industry."