Gordon and Marion Jones own some 300 acres with about 100 head of Holsteins in Chichester, New Hampshire. And like many farmers in the area, the Jones family has spent most of their life on the farm. Gordon and Marion purchased the family farm from Gordon's parents over a decade ago, raised their family there, and are as much a part of the land and landscape as the trees, fields, and cattle you see dotting the countryside.
But things aren't always steady and serene. For example, one year after they were married, Gordon and Marion's house caught fire and was largely destroyed. No worries. The barn, which was attached to the house, was saved. And a farmer can survive without a house for a while, but not a barn. In more recent times, Gordon has suffered severe knee damage and after multiple surgeries, had his right knee replaced. Just part of the process.
Says Gordon,"You have to keep your faith and spirits high." Even with drops in milk prices, the occasional fire, medical emergencies, and a work day that would crush most people, Gordon and Marion keep moving down the path. Armed with faith and a love of farming, Gordon was able to keep operating at full speed even after three surgeries on his knee with the help of friends, neighbors, and some talented farm hands. The constant theme of community spirit and neighbors helping neighbors meant that good help was available when Gordon needed it most.
And the Jones family gives every bit as much as it gets. Gordon is a member of the township's Conservation Commission and a good friend of the University of New Hampshire. It is not uncommon on short notice for Gordon to jump off his tractor, stop work for a few hours, and show agriculture students from the university the ins and outs of the trade. Said Gordon: "This is one of the joys of farming. Sharing our knowledge and our farm so the farming tradition can live on."