Seldom Seen Farm Hike – Gays Mills

“Once you have lived on the land, been a partner
with its moods, secrets, and seasons, you cannot leave.”
The Land Remembers: The Story of a Farm and Its People, 1975
* Ben Logan 1920-2014 *

Seldom Seen Farm, the beloved ridge-top landscape in Wisconsin’s
southwestern corner that was the setting of the “The Land Remembers,” became forever protected in 2008 as part of an agreement that Ben Logan signed with the Mississippi Valley Conservancy.

On October 22nd, 2011, the Mississippi Valley Conservancy will host Seldom Seen Farm Hike near Gays Mills.

The event will honor Logan with the dedication of a monument, followed by a tour of the farm.
You will be able to hike the natural settings of Logan’s memorable story; as well as walk into the experience of a Driftless Wisconsin autumn.

When: Saturday, October 22nd, 2011, 10 a.m.
Where: Seldom Seen Farm, 51834 Zintz Road, Gays Mills, WI
Directions:
From Gays Mills, head south on State Highway 131 for approximately 3.5 miles. Turn right onto County Road S for 1.8 miles, and turn left onto Zintz Road. Continue for about 2 miles to the driveway of the residence, on the north side of the road.

From La Crosse  (allow about an hour and fifteen minutes). Head South on Hwy 35, and turn left onto Hwy 171 and proceed for 7.5 miles. Turn right onto Hwy 27 for 3.2 miles and turn left onto County Road S for 2.2 miles. Turn right onto Halls Branch Road for just under a mileandasharpleftontoZintz Road for a mile.

What: Following a presentation by Mississippi Valley Conservancy, MVC executive director Tim Jacobson and MVC conservation specialist Abbie Church will lead a public hike of the farm. On the hike, participants will see ridgetop farm fields with scenic views of the surrounding Kickapoo River valley and walk into the woods to view bubbling springs, migratory songbirds and woodland wildflowers.
The hike will be easy to moderate. Wear long pants and close-toed shoes.

“The Land Remembers: The Story of a Farm and its People” by Ben Logan is the heartwarming autobiographical story of Logan’s early life in the 1930s on Seldom Seen Farm, located on a hard-to-reach ridge near Gays Mills in Crawford County. The book, originally published in 1975, has an eighth edition released in 2006 with an afterword from Logan.

The New York Times Book Review:
“What drew me so irresistibly through The Land Remembers?… You feel nostalgia when the details of the world are so precisely concrete and right that by the time the author tells you his own reactions to that world you feel you already know it just about as well as he does. . . . It’s not nostalgia for my own past that The Land Remembers made me feel; it’s nostalgia for a world he makes me wish I’d known.”
Hoard’s Dairyman Book Review:
“This book creates an urge to go back to the time that author Ben Logan references. Logan grew up in the southwest Wisconsin hill country. After a strong career writing in New York City, he returned to his home and now resides in Viroqua at the age of 90. The Land Remembers explains what life was like in the “driftless area,” where the glaciers were unable to flatten the land to resemble neighboring Iowa and Illinois.”

My local library system has several copies of Logan’s autobiography; which I’ve added to my reading list.  Sounds like a good local history source for our homeschool studies, too.

Wisconsin Historical Society Archives

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