For well over 100 years, the Glick family has farmed near Cedar Bluff in Cedar County. And during that time, raising cattle has always been a big part of the farm.
“They ran cows and had a little bit of everything, kind of the way it was back then,” Larry Glick said about his ancestors, who first bought land in the Cedar River valley in 1897. But cattle, he said, were always a major part of the farm.
The Glicks will be one of 360 Iowa farm families to receive the Century Farm award this week during a ceremony at the Iowa State Fair. Another 147 families who have owned their farms for 150 years will receive Heritage Farm awards.
The awards, which date back the U.S. Bicentennial year, are sponsored by the Iowa Farm Bureau Federation and the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship.
The Glick Century Farm had its origins with Larry’s great-grandfather William Fankhauser, who purchased three parcels totaling 256 acres just west of Cedar Bluff.
Today, Larry farms with wife Berrie, his son Rob, and daughter-in-law Amy, raising corn and soybeans with some alfalfa and a 75-head cow/calf herd. Larry and Berrie also have a daughter, Carrie.
Larry, a Vietnam veteran, began farming with his dad, Oscar, in 1972 after he came back from four years in the Air Force. His father passed away in 1998.
Living close to the river, flooding has always been an issue for the Glick farm.
“The family has always fought floods on this farm, it just came with it,” Larry notes. “My dad said you can fight a fire but you can’t fight water.”
The house, Larry noted, escaped other floods in 1929, 1961 and 1993. But the floods in 2008 destroyed the original family home.
Oscar Glick was a pioneer with conservation tillage, Larry said, noting that his dad never liked clean plowing and always liked to leave some leaf litter on top of the soil after it was tilled. In 1968, he purchased a sidewinder rotary tiller. In 1983, they converted to no-till, years before the practice was popular.
Still on the farm, and still in use, is a 1962 Minneapolis Moline M5 that Larry drove home new when he was in high school from Bluegrass, where his uncle Ken Fankhauser had a dealership.
Good neighbor award
Earlier this year, the Glicks were honored with the Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award.
Neighbor Dan Schott nominated the Glick family for the award, nothing their strong ties to the community, particularly with Farm Bureau and the 4-H program.
“Rob’s father was one of my 4-H leaders as a kid,” Schott said.
Amy is the vice president of the Cedar County Farm Bureau. The Glick family goes even further by promoting agriculture via Facebook and other social media.
Meyer is a freelance writer in Garrison.