Georgia Cow Pasture with Cherokee Roots

Georgia Cow Pasture with Cherokee Roots

July 6, 2016

Georgia Farm Monitor 

Certainly not every farmer can say that they raise cattle on a sacred Cherokee Indian burial ground, but Matthew London and his multi-generational cattle operation in Cleveland, Georgia are doing just that. 

London’s Holstein and Jersey heifers graze around a scenic field with a centerpiece that has become one of the most intact historic properties in Georgia. The historic Nacoochee Indian Mound – a large plush hill with a red-roofed gazebo perched on the top – exists within the 173 acres of Hardman Farms.  

“Our family has been blessed over the years to be able to lease this property from the Hardman family and the state of Georgia,” said London. 

London said that the soil underneath the historical mound has been excavated twice in recent history: first in 1915 and then again in 2000. All of the historical artifacts that were found are now displayed in Washington DC’s Smithsonian

While it could be intimidating to work on such an historic site, London respects the sanctity of the land and focuses on the well-being of his cattle. 

“We farm approximately 2,000 head of Holstein and Jersey heifers from ages 100 days old to eight months bred,” London said. “We sell them to dairy farmers from North Carolina all the way through to Florida and we raise all the crops for these cattle, including the grass.”

London maintains up to 250 acres of hay in an attempt to independently produce all the forages needed for his heifers. 

The grazing pasture may have historical significance for the state of Georgia, but it also has personal significance for London. The property has been in his family for over 30 years now. 

“I’m truly blessed to be able to work alongside my dad and my granddad,” said London. “I’m very fortunate, I really am. They’ve instilled hard work in me and there are no two other guys that work harder than my dad and granddad.”

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