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Derbyshire Advertiser & Journal 28 Jul 1911

Our Agricultural Page.
Occupier: Mr. Joseph Brown,
Shirlev Mill Farm, the aubject of this week sketch, is owned Sir Peter Walker, Bart., of Osmaston Manor, better landlord than whom no farmer need wish to have, Mr. Joseph Brown, the occupier, told our representative in a recent interview. and although Mr. Brown is a young farmer he is competent judge, having been born and bred on a farm, and receiving the practical experience which after all. is the best schooling. Which has enabled him to carry on a considerable business of his own account, He is the son of the late Mr. Thos. Brown, of Callwood and Rowland Hill farms, Belper, and before coming to reside at Shirley Mill farmed at Mercaslon Hall, along with brother the holding of 200 acres, being the property of Colonel Chandos-Pole. This was when he was only 21 years of age and after continuing the joint occupation of Mercaston Hall Farm for some lime, Mr. Brown became the occupier of Shirley Mill Farm two years ago.
The area of this farm about 130 acres, of which 34 acres are meadow land, 16 arable, and the remainder pasture. There is abundant supply of water, the arable land is excellent for wheat, but owing the low lying ground sheep breeding cannot carried with profit, but there were 19 hogs on the farm. The crops included, addition to the wheat (which this year is grown on the gravel), turnips, mangolds, oats, and potatoes. The wheat and oats were very good, and the early-sown turnips were satisfactorv, but those put in during May had not grown well they might have done owing to the dry season.
Mr. Brown had at the time of our representative’s visit a herd of 28 dairy cattle, and three churns of milk per day were being despatched to London from Ashbourne station. Amongst the cows was large red poll, which, Mr. Brown informed us. gave six gallons of milk a day, and there were some excellent red shorthorns that gave large quantities of milk, and were regarded as above the average in profit. There were 21 head young stock, and ten calves are reared every year. The cooling house for the milk is situate close to brook, from which the power is derived for driving Shirley Mill, which, although adjoining the farmhouse, is not worked Mr. Brown, but by Messrs. Frank Wright, Ltd., of Ashbourne. Water for cooling purposes is, however, obtained from spring some distance away from tho buildings by means a ram, and tins also supplies the farm house. The sheds are commodious, and the interiors have a liberal coating of tar and limewash, which give a clean and hygienic appearance to the building.
The occupier of Shirley Mill Farm has not devoted the whole to purely agricultural pursuits, but has like many other farmers in the district, given attention to shire horse breeding. with a measure of success and with every prospect of attaining honours in the show yard. He is the proud possessor of a very good stamp of breeding mare, Oddo Bute, 51913, which is by Sheen Harold, 15834 (by Harold), and her dam, which was registered in the Stud Book, Vol. 21, which was by Berkshire William 12764. Oddo Bute, which has plenty of width, and is entered in Vol. 28 of the Stud Book, was bred by Mr. Henry Richardson, of Newhaven House, and Mr. Brown bought her as a three year old from Mr. W. Prince of Elton, Winster. She is a chestnut, with a white mark down the face, and was foaled in 1903.
Shirley Countess, a light bay, which was foaled in May 1910, is out of Oddo Bute, by Sterling Jameson, one of Mr. J. W. Whitehurt's noted sires, and was bred by, and is still in the possession of Mr. Brown, who showed her at Derby when only five weeks old, and later at Uttoxeter where she was fifth in a class of 22. This filly has the making of a good type of animal, and will probably figure in the show ring this year.
On June 5th Oddo Bute dropped another filly foal, also by Sterling Jameson, to which horse the mare is again going to be put.
Another filly, by Lockinge Manners, was purchased from Mr. Brown by Mr J. W. Whitehurt of Markeaton.
Mr. Brown owns one of the fastest cobs on the road, and altogether there are eight horses on the farm.
In addition to farm management, Mr. Brown conducts the business of machinery proprieter, and his thrashing sets are well known amongst farmers in the neighbourhood.
The poultry, of course, is the especial care of Mrs. Brown, who, like her husband, has been connected with farming all her life, being the only daughter of Mr. S. Wood, of the Gables, Mercaston.

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