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2001/08/14

2nd Annual Plow Day At 6 T's Farm In Dresden, Tennessee Article and photos by Rita Smith It was a pretty hot day, May 12th, when the 2nd annual plow day and horse farming demonstration was held at the 6 T's Farm of Dresden, Tennessee. 6 T's was originally named for Joe Tuberville, (Dad), Jean, (Mom), who they lost last year, and their 4 children, Mike, Joetta, Holly, and Sherry. Holly and Sherry don't live nearby any more, so the every day running of the farm is left up to Joe, Mike, Joetta, Ken White, Joetta's husband,. and Mike's wife, Janet. In the past Mike and Janet's kids, Andrea and Kevin, also helped in the everyday chores, but they are now in college, and can only help during the summer, or on the week ends. 6 T's is the home of quite a large hog operation. They have 4 feeding floors for topping out hogs which hold approximately 1,000 head in each barn. They also raise Belgian horses, they have brood mares, and stud, with a total of 26 head. They also have a cow and calf operation. Joe said, " we use to run about 65 head of momma cows, but we have downsized to about 25. They raise their own feed for the horses and cows, along with quite a large operation of Bermuda grass hay for their own use and to sell. After attending Frank Swords annual plow day for a few years, they decided to have one of their own. Because of their love of draft horses and what they can be used for, they wanted to show the people in their area that farming with horses isn't completely extinct. Of course all of the older folks, who can remember walking behind those plows really enjoy seeing it done again. Those who it is new to, enjoyed it just as much. In between all the different demonstrations, both teamsters and spectators would look for a little bit of shade every now and then, but that didn't keep them all from enjoying themselves. With a total of drafts just under 30 head, several breeds were represented. There were Belgians, draft mules, and Percherons. There were even some saddle and quarter horses being ridden. Most of the spectators were from near by, but the teamsters came from Arkansas, Kentucky, Mississippi and Tennessee. Frank Swords of Holly Springs, Mississippi, with the help of his farm manager, Vernon Stroupe and Michael Sexton brought a team of Percheron geldings, DIC and DOC. They also brought a riding plow and some walking plows, which they demonstrated to the crowd. Jeff Ferge of Laconia, TN. brought his team of Percheron geldings and a logging wagon, so he could demonstrate how he and others still log with horses to make a living. Not only does it save trees needing to grow more, but it doesn't tear up the woods for the wildlife, when they use horses to haul the logs out to the road for loading onto the trucks. The Howells' of Trenton, TN. brought draft mules, and a motorized fore cart which they built themselves. They were able to demonstrate how you can still use horse power along with some of the more modern equipment. With the use of the powered fore cart, they have a PTO just like on a tractor, and can raise and lower a 3 point hitch. Alan Smith, of Sardis, TN. brought his pair of 2 year old Percheron geldings and demonstrated how to rake and bale hay. Lee Stover from Obion, TN. gave a shoeing exhibition, and showed how the use of a stock made it a lot easier when shoeing draft stock. The Dresden FFA sold hamburgers and hot dogs, along with giving wagon rides and horseback rides to help make money. Children got to try their hands at plowing, while the grown ups competed in the men's and women's walking plowing contest, followed by the riding plowing contest. Winner of the Women's plowing contest was 1st -Janet Bowmer of Dresden, TN. 2nd to Christie Laws of Martin, and 3rd was a tie between Diana Clark of Dresden, and myself. The Men's Walking Plow Contest was won by Alan Smith of Sardis, TN. 2nd went to Jeff Ferge of Laconia, TN., and 3rd went to Kenneth Edwards. Vernon Stroupe of Holly Springs, MS. showed his stuff when he won the riding plow contest. Michael Sexton also of Holly Springs, MS. won 2nd and Phil Burrows of Collierville, TN won 3rd. All the winners were awarded things they could use like wormer and fly spray which was donated by some of the area business. The business to be thanked for their support are, the Veterinary Clinic of Milan, Ward Animal Clinic of Fulton, KY., Trenton Animal Clinic, Weakley Farmers Co-Op in Martin, Dresden Auto Parts, and the North West Veterinary Service of Dresden. The Tuberville's also gave away 50 square bales of Bermuda grass hay. Both Vernon Stroupe and Alan Smith each won 25 bales. One thing was for sure, both spectators and teamsters and their families had a great time and really enjoyed the day. I'm sure everyone is looking forward to next years event!

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