Dartmouth’s King Farm Awarded Century Farm Recognition
Nestled on 120 acres of land sits a farm in South Dartmouth that has stood the test of time for over a century. One family has managed to keep King Farm flourishing for several generations, and it is now officially recognized by the Massachusetts Farm Bureau Federation as a century-old farm, an accomplishment that doesn’t come easily.
Dan King is the current owner of King Farm, alongside his brother and cousin, but his family farm has been in operation long before he stepped foot on its soil.
“It’s been in our family for 180 years,” King said. “William Ricketson Slocum purchased the land back in the 1800s, so there have been some name changes over the years, but it’s always been our family.”
Their farm became known as King Farm in the early 1900s and its function has changed over the years. Nowadays, King Farm operates as a hay farm for farm animals, but it’s best known for its retail store where they sell locally sourced items.
“We work with local growers to bring fruits, baked goods, locally made teas and coffees, and high quality artisanal local food,” King said. They run their own farm stand which compliments the adjacent farm stand run by Brix Bounty Farm. King was proud to say that Brix leases out 10 acres of King Farm and offers the freshest local vegetables in the area.
Dan King grew up on King Farm but admits he didn’t like it at first.
“As a kid, I didn’t like farming. My mom and dad made me help with the hard labor, and then I went away to college with no plans of farming," he said. "Later in life, I began running my own farm, and then it all fell into place and has become a huge part of my life.”
He now has a son of his own that helps around the farm.
“I was very lucky to grow up on a farm as a kid and I hope my son appreciates it, too," he said.
After speaking with King, it’s clear how King Farm has flourished for over a century. They take pride in being a part of the community and connecting with the people around them.
“It’s paramount to be involved in the community,” King said. “Farmers like to grow things, so you need to be involved, but it also helps people stay connected with one another and come face to face with people who share the same values as us: a passion for locally grown food.”
Dan and his family intend on running this farm for as long as the earth will let them. His parents, Beverly and David, as well as his aunt, sold the development rights to the state in the late '90s, which prohibits any sort of development on their land. It will remain a farm until the end of time, filled with history and run with passion.
You can find a spotlight on King Farm in Massachusetts Century Farms 2020 by Liz Smith and you will be able to see their Century Farm certificate hanging proudly in the farm stand when it opens on May 1.