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Celebrating the History of the Jones Yellow Barn
Jones Dairy Farm commemorates the 100th anniversary of the historic Jones Yellow Barn, built on the company’s current property in Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin, in 1922, by hosting the “Jones Yellow Barn Centennial Celebration” on Saturday, September 17, 2022, from 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. A limited number of tickets are available at $25.00 per person, with all proceeds from the event benefitting local youth agriculture scholarships.
According to Jones Dairy Farm Chairman and CEO Philip Jones, the two-story, gothic roof structure affectionally known as the “Yellow Barn” because of its distinctive butter yellow color, is the reason why the meat manufacturer has “dairy farm” in its company name. Although run separately from its internationally known meat business, Jones Dairy Farm also was home to a working dairy farm until the mid-1980’s.
The yellow barn was built along a wide bend in the Rock River about a mile southwest of Fort Atkinson by W.D. James, founder of The James Manufacturing Company. Mr. James, who bought 80-acres from the Jones family around 1919 to establish his own dairy farm, is best known for creating “The James Way” that’s still synonymous with innovative dairy farm equipment today.
State-of-the-art for its time, the yellow dairy barn was built with two interior silos and a single exterior silo, and equipped with the latest James Way ventilation, support columns, stanchions, stall fittings, drinking cups, mangers, and litter removal systems. Shortly after W. D.’s death in 1948, the farm, including the Yellow Barn, was sold back to the Jones family which operated the property as a dairy farm and swine breeding operation until 1985.
With the Jones Yellow Barn turning 100 this year, the company decided to pay homage to the historical site by hosting a five-hour community event bringing together food, entertainment, agriculture and education. The price of admission to the Jones Yellow Barn Centennial Celebration includes:
- Hay wagon tour of the Jones Property (which takes attendees out to the barn)
- All-you-can-eat pulled pork meal
- Live bluegrass music
- Farm equipment display
- More than a dozen educational experiences that include an Old World Wisconsin blacksmith demo; “Jamesway” history presented by the Hoard Historical Museum; Live animals: dairy cow breeds, swine and honey bees; farmer talks about all aspects of dairy farming; and the Jefferson County Barn Quilt Trail
“The 100th anniversary celebration provides the perfect opportunity to showcase our beloved yellow barn to the local community, commemorate its historical significance to the dairy farm industry, and support the next generation of agriculture leaders in our area,” said Mr. Jones.
The Jones Yellow Barn Centennial Celebration begins at the Jones Market located at 601 Jones Avenue in Fort Atkinson. Hayrides to the barn leave every 15 minutes. Click here (www.shopjonesmarket.com) for more information about the event or to register online for a specified time slot.