SeaPony Farm is located at 21 Crooked Lane in Nantucket, Massachusetts, and is one of the oldest recorded farms on Nantucket, Island.
In 1935, the U.S. Census designated 33 farms at 6,564 acres on Nantucket, the property being one of them.
In 1850, William E. Gardner compiled a Map of Nantucket Farms from data supplied by J. Gibbs, map supplied by A.E. Hoyle in 1946. The site of the property is designated as a farm, #91 on the Map. The farm was owned by William H.H. Smith and named the “Franklin Valley Farm” by Mary E. Crosby his widow. The property was formerly known as the “Benny B. Gardner Farm”. Benjamin Gardner was born in 1785 and died at 80 years old in 1865. He owned the Ivy Lodge at 2 Chester Street, Nantucket.
An article mentioning the property was written in the Inky Newspaper in 1930,by Sidney Folger
He wrote, recalling his boyhood days,
“a man named James Thompson owned it. He was called a “gentleman farmer,” as he conducted a dry goods store on the south side of Main Street. He was a lover of fine stock, horses, fancy poultry, and I am quite sure he introduced the first Jersey cattle on the island. I remember seeing them at a Cattle Show and also a big bull that was worked in a cart on the farm. Mr. Thompson had some Houdas poultry added to his flock at one time and an Irish laborer on the farm was so interested with them, that he asked Mr. Thompson how much a dozen eggs would be, as he would like to raise some chickens. He was informed they would be three dollars.
“And how many eggs a day does a hen lay, Mr. Thompson?”
“Why you divillish Irishman,” was the reply,
“only one, of course.”
“Why Mr. Thompson!
I have plenty of hins at home that do that,” answered Pat.
Mr. Thompson did not sell any eggs to him.
See Article Remembrance in Line with “Franklin Valley Farm.”
by Sidney B. Folger October 27, 1930.
Located adjacent to the pasture on Madaket Road is a historical monument at the site of the Folger Farm.
Abiah Folger Franklin was born on August 15, 1667, on Madaket Road to a farmer and surveyor Peter Folger. She became the second wife of Josiah Franklin of Boston. They had eight children, the youngest being Benjamin Franklin. Josiah had ten children with his previous wife and upon her passing Abiah raised all eighteen children.
The Abiah Folger Franklin Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution placed the monument at the site of the Folger Farm on Madaket Road.
Today, sitting on the bench you may catch a glimpse of the SeaPony Farm herd, including Raisin and Walnut, our miniature donkeys, in their pasture or see the participants trail riding along the Madaket Road trails.
photo credit: Jim Lentowski
SeaPony Farm will be operating the Therapeutic Equestrian Center on the property for children and adults with varying abilities. In May of 2009, we added two new boys, our Alpacas, Gracey and Chi Chi, to our family. They will spend the spring, summer and fall in the field on Crooked Land. The winter months will be spent in the upper field near their horse and donkey friends. We have added some honeybees, compliments of David G. Berry, Beekeeper, of Nantucket Honey Bee Company, busily pollinating our blueberry bushes.
Let us know if you have any special memories of the Farm.
A special thank you to Debra McManis for her help in compiling some of the information concerning the history of the property.
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