This is something that's near and dear to my heart. The family farm that I grew up on was a Missouri Century Farm. Unfortunately we had to sell the farm after my Dad had a stroke but I'll always remember the sign we received certifying it as such.

If your farm has been in your family since Dec. 31, 1921, you can apply to have it recognized as a Missouri Century Farm.

In 1976 when Missouri had the American Revolution Bicentennial, Governor Christopher Bond indicated that agriculture should play a prominent role in Missouri's Bicentennial celebration since agriculture was the state's number one industry.

The Centennial Farm project was established and awarded certificates to persons owning farms that had been in the same family for 100 years or more. A total of 2,850 Missouri farm owners in 105 of Missouri's 114 counties were recognized as Centennial Farm owners. Since the program began in 1976, more than 8,000 Missouri farms have received the Century Farm designation.

To qualify, the same family must have owned the farm for 100 consecutive years. The line of ownership from the original settler or buyer may be through children, grandchildren, siblings, and nephews or nieces, including through marriage or adoption. The farm must be at least 40 acres of the original land acquisition and make a financial contribution to the overall farm income.

Details and online applications are available at extension.missouri.edu. A $120 fee covers the cost of a certificate, farm sign and booklet for approved applicants. County MU Extension centers present these items.

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