|About Weyrich Farm |
"The Farm," a friend says, "You don't capitalize it. It's not The White House." Nevertheless, we think of it in capital letters because it is such a strong force in the heritage of the family. Felix O. Weyrich came to Eagle Pass in the late 1800's on horseback, newly apprenticed & ready to open his blacksmith shop.
In 1910 Felix and Nellie bought the first 40 acres and began planting pecan trees and building a house. The Mexican Revolution brought many refugees streaming across the Rio Grande, our western border. Felix gave them permission to camp along the river. They built huts of cane bundles and mud.
Felix and his neighbors hired many of the men to work clearing the land, paying them 50 cents a day and a box of groceries on Saturday. There were hundreds who camped and soon the whole of Hopedale Valley was cleared. Neighbors pooled their resources to build an aqua duct for pumping water from the Rio Grande for irrigation.
Fred (Felix and Nellie's son) and Jewel Weyrich added acreage and planted more trees. Jewel started the mail order business sending 5#bags of whole and cracked pecans to friends and relatives. Soon word spread and the orders came pouring in.
Fred Weyrich, Jr (Fred and Jewel's son 1938-1989) became an incredible artist and teacher, settling in Austin, TX after many adventures around the world. He designed the original Farm logo.
Mary Frances Weyrich (Fred and Jewel's daughter) with husband Joe Gray(1937-1988) moved back to The Farm to raise her family. Daughter's Leah and Frances (Kika) are continuing the tradition. Mary Frances began using beneficial insects and dramatically reduced the use of synthetic pesticides and chemical fertilizers. She added candy, cakes and coffee to the still growing business. With Kika's help the online store and website were created. Mary Frances currently lives at Fort Clark Springs in Brackettville, TX about 45 min away with her husband Kurt Partlow
Kika Gray Rogers (Mary and Joe Gray's daughter) lives in San Antonio TX with her family. She and her husband, Frank, own Small Business Services of San Antonio www.sbsofsa.com They host the web site, help with computer problems and supervise accounting for The Farm.
Now 105 years later, Leah Gray (Mary and Joe Gray's older daughter) manages The Farm. Leah has always felt strongly about organic farming and was the driving force behind The Farm becoming certified organic. Within the first year the difference was visible in the tree health. Now 10 years later the trees sport lush dark green leaves.
Leah's sons Jake (29) & John (25) enjoyed growing up on The Farm helping with the irrigations and harvest. Leah's younger children Lauren (11) and Sean Michael (10) love to be outside and Lauren is always ready to "check the water" in her rubber boots. Kika's daughter, Magaly (21), also has a very strong bond with The Farm and enjoys helping when she comes down. It will be interesting to see who continues the tradition and how they add to and improve The Farm.
There is much more to the history of Weyrich Farm, come sit under the beautiful pecan trees and let Mary Frances tell you the rest of the story... or take a tour around the farm with Leah and get "hooked" on goats and the beauty of nature.