The fifth generation of the Grisamore Family lives on our farm. The Grisamores moved from the Chicago area in 1927. Maurice, Else, and Else's mother Renata Koch came to Locke, New York to live on this farm. Maurice was a conductor on the New York Central Railroad and one of his co-workers bought a farm nearby. They started with a dairy in the early days. The dairy barn is now our farm store.
They first planted strawberries in 1939. Glen Rexwinkle came to visit from Michigan and he brought with him 300 strawberry plants. Glen's father had a huge strawberry farm from which they sold berries by the railroad car. Maurice went to Michigan to learn more about growing strawberries. Glen helped them with their first few years of production. The next year they planted more plants. Maurice sold $36 worth of strawberries to Stevens and Hicks grocery store in Locke. It was comparable to a months wages in those days. In 1941, they had an acre of berries. Four women that lived nearby helped the family pick from 5pm until dark. They were Marie Lewis, Lillian Lamphier, Mrs. Casey, and Mrs. Reiks. Then they would sell them to Atwaters, a large grocery store in Ithaca, New York. The rest would be on the front porch of their house for the neighbors and passersby to purchase.
We've raised alot of different animals in our barn - pigs, beef cows, calves, and chickens. In 1972, there was a flood and the strawberry crop floated away. We needed some income so we planted some vegetable crops - broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage. That year we also planted our blueberry bushes, 25 acres. The next year we put up our first greenhouse to raise our own vegetable plants and some flowers. In the years since we've added five more greenhouses. In 1975 we planted our apple orchard and opened our farm store. We sold all the animals except "Alice" our famous cow. She became the first animal in our menagerie. In 1978 we planted our cherry orchard with both sweet and sour cherries. There have been many changes since the early years. Now some of the grandchildren live here, too. We are hoping that they will continue the farming tradition, but it is too early to tell as they are from the ages of 9 - 16. The farm store has evolved a long way too since it beginning as a dairy barn. The back portion of the farm store was just rebuilt. New construction started in April 2000. It now houses the new cooler and the cider press. There is a lot of extra space in our barn for new projects.