History - The Barn at Fairview Acres

History

We are a Real Farm!

In Henderson County, there is a small village called Biggsville, IL. As of the Census of 2010, the small village had a population of 304. Our farm is located west of Biggsville in Biggsville Township which is a rural farming community in West Central Illinois. This township has a population 552, as of the 2010 Census. The farm was purchased on January 15, 1919 by Ora Ray Smith, who is Cristy Pott’s great grandfather. In the late 1920’s, Ora and his wife Mayme bought a modular home that was brought in pieces by train and then constructed on the farm. This home is lovingly called the “Home Place” by the Smith family and 4 generations of Smith family members have lived in the home. Six families have lived in the home with Cristy and Dan’s family being the 6th family to call the house their home.

Not only was Great Grandpa Ora a farmer, he was also a politician who served 6 terms in the Illinois State House, a term as Illinois State Treasurer from 1949-1951 under Governor Adlai Stevenson II, and served an unexpected term as Illinois Senator.

The farm has been a true farm over the years, where corn and soybeans were planted and harvested, livestock–including milk cows, angus cattle, and pigs–and chickens were raised, orchards tended, gardens grown, and children nurtured. The 4-H kids in the family showed their livestock at the Henderson county fair every year and even had a grand champion heifer one year at the fair; an angus of course, shown by no other than Mary Susan (Smith) Collins, Cristy’s mother.

The Smith family farmers were progressive. Cristy’s great grandfather, Ora Ray Smith, and grandfather, Ray Gerald Smith, son of Ora Ray Smith, built one of the first automated feeding setups for cattle in the United States on the farm in the 1950’s. It was featured in a national farm magazine. Cristy’s Uncle, Ora Kent Smith, planned and ordered a hog climate controlled finishing building on the farm in the 1970’s . Due to his tragic death in 1978 in a plane crash, John Alexander and Ray Smith completed the project.

After Ora Kent’s death, Cristy’s Aunt and Uncle, Patricia (Smith) and John Alexander, took over the family farm. John and Ray Smith adopted no-till farming in the 1980’s. No-till farming is a way of growing crops from year to year without disturbing the soil through tillage. No-till is an agricultural technique which increases the amount of water that infiltrates the soil, thus increasing the soil’s retention of organic matter and its cycling of nutrients.

In the 1950’s, a small pond was built on the property. Grandpa Ray and Grandma Genevieve always talked about building a larger pond . Towards the end of their lives and to honor their wishes, their children oversaw the build of a 2.5 acre pond on the property during the late 1990’s.

No family members currently farm the land, However, a tenant farmer, who uses the no-till agriculture technique, continues to plant and harvest corn and soybeans on the property.

Our Farm is the Perfect Wedding Venue in Illinois

We don’t mean to brag, but this farm has some of the most stunning views. It’s hard to find any moment that isn’t picture worthy. When you book with us, you get the rustic, quaint atmosphere as well as the breath-taking views of fields, sunsets, and wildlife. With the stunning views on the farm, along with the existing corn crib and grain bin, an idea was born for a unique event venue that is easily accessible via Burlington, IA or Monmouth, IL.

We offer many unique amenities, including a morning of fishing on the property for the groom and groomsmen, a two story bridal suite, decorations and lights, and so much more! We know your event will feel special here.

Contact Dan & Cristy anytime with questions or to learn more about booking your wedding or special event today! Call 309-270-6347.

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