Lancaster farming. (Lancaster, Pa., etc.) 1955-current, January 17, 1981, Image 90

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    C2—Lancaster Fannins, Saturday, January 17,1981
Glenn Miller and his daughter Melinda, are
partners on this Bedford County farm. The building
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Even the mailboxes resemble the Blue Ridge
farm. These boxes set at the end of the three
quarter mile lane.
This painting resembling the Miller farm covers
the wall around the office of the barn.
The milking parlor, designed and built by Glenn, is
Melinda’s favorite addition to the farm. She can
complete milking in two hours.
on the left houses the milking parlor.
take a pleasant
WOODBURY When Glenn Miller started farming 28
years ago he had a dream much like that of other dairy
farmers - to own and operate a successful dairy
production and someday share it with the next generation.
After the birth of two sons, Larry and Robert, and the
growth of his dairy herd, his dream seemed well on its
way to becoming a reality
Well, folks, it has come true - but with a slightly dif
ferent, yet, modem twist. Instead of a partnership with
one of his sons, Glenn works beside, confides in, and plans
a partnership with his youngest daughter, 22-year-old
“My brothers never took an interest m the farm the way
I did,” Melinda says. “I always helped in the barn and the
fields when I was younger and I grew to enjoy the freedom
farming offers. When I went to Penn State, I decided
farming is what I wanted to do so I majored in ag
Before college however, Melinda spent many mornings,
evenings, weekends and summer vacations milking cows.
“I used to help milk every morning before I went to
school and every evening I’d go straight home to help out.
I’ve never held any other job. I’ve never needed to,”
Melinda beams
But what’s it like, being another boss on the farm and
having your opinion count as though the decision
depended on you 9
“It’s great. My dad and I really get along and we
discuss everything before we do it We never have any
disagreements and he listens to any ideas I have to offer,”
she said
“The only time there are any problems is when
salesmen or other people come here and ask for the boss.
They never believe I am one and when I finally convince
them, they automatically assume I don’t know anything.”
However this dedication to the farm helped her receive
the title of FFA sweetheart at Northern Bedford High
School her senior year, 1976
After high school she started college at the Altoona
campus She commuted so she could return home to the
farm every day.
When she received her associate degree in 1979, she was
voted the representative to accept the degree for all
associate degree recipients at her graduation ceremony
“After graduation I was happy to come back to the farm
Melinda poses with her dog D.J., a big Saint
Bernard. Her other dog. Jigger, is, according to
Melinda, a “Heinz 57 dog, a little bit of everything.”
Melinda and her father Glenn go over some
milking records. Melinda says, “We get along well
and discuss almost everything before we do it.”
because I like the country and I like the idea of being my
own boss,’’she said
The Miller Farm she returned to, known in the area as
the Blue Ridge Farm, is nestled in a large valley between
the Appalachian Mountains in west-central Pennsylvania,
off Hickory Bottom Road, and down a dirt lane three
quarters of a mile in length
The valley, known as Morrison’s Cove is famous for its
fertile farmland and sets on the southern end of Blair
County It extends into the northern part of Bedford
“We own 400 acres of the cove, 195 of it is woodland and
205 is tillable land,” Melinda sad The majority of their
farmland is used for alfalfa and com
But Glenn Miller and his daughter Melinda as partners
is not the only thing the cove farmers are talking about
The Miller homestead itself is an absorbing story.
While Melinda was still in junior high school, the Blue
Ridge Farm consisted of an aging bam, a house which
Glenn built, one silo and a few old sheds
Now the farm boasts two Harvesters, three con
ventional silos, a milking parlor, two free-stall bams (one
for calves and one for milking cows), a hospital area for
breeding and calving purposes, a new imphment shed, a
machinery shop,'and a shed for housing large machinery.
Melinda is especially proud of the building which houses
the milking parlor unit. On the walls surrounding the unit
a large picture of their farm has been painted. On the
other side of this particular wall is the office - complete
with files, desk and pool table. In one corner sets an
elevator connecting the upstairs office with the down
stairs milkhouse.
According to Melinda it only takes her two hours to
prepare, wash, milk and clean up after theu 85 Holstein
cows using the milking parlor unit her father designed.
Glenn Miller adds, “I wanted to be able to leave and
enter the unit at anytime during milking so I constructed a
stairway in the center. Also I wanted to build my parlor
such that there would be nothing to interfere with cleaning
up the floor afterward. So the unit is mounted on wheels on
a track which moves as the unit itself moves around ”
Besides drawing up the floor plans, designing and
building a majority of the parts, Miller constructed the
building hiSMself. He hds in fact built all of his buildings
with the help of timber from his wooded land and
“Melinda’s muscles ”
Melinda and her father recently finished constructing a
free-stall barn for their calves “We bought the rafters
from my brother, Larry, who is in that business,” Melinda
says proving that the project was truly a family affair.
Melinda reports theirnext projects are “a bam in which
to start calves and a small shelter around the silo con
veyor belts so they don’t get wet.”
“I enjoy helpmg dad build things - we’ve really turned
this place around in the past few years,” Melinda laughs
They purchased the rafters from her brother Larry
who is in this business.
(Turn to Page C 4)