Tag Archives: South Georgia Dairies

Southern Swiss Dairy, Burke County

I was born at the tail-end of the era of home milk delivery and therefore, had never tasted “fresh” milk. After reading an article by Damon Lee Fowler about Southern Swiss Dairy, I decided it was time to try it for myself.

I liked what I read about Jimmy and Ginny Franks, who during the economic downturn of the late 2000s decided to transform their cattle operation into a commercial dairy that would focus on non-homogenized low-pasteurized milk, with no use of growth hormones. They also sell butter, ice cream, beef, and fresh eggs. Southern Swiss Dairy has been in business since 2010.

They source their milk from these wonderful Brown Swiss cows, which are among the top milk-producing breeds. Besides productivity, the Brown Swiss are just happier cows than most. They’re friendly, even.

Southern Swiss Dairy wasn’t the easiest place to find, and though they sell most of their product in retail locations, I wanted to see the cows myself. I could tell that Ginny Franks was busy when we pulled up to the dairy office but she was very welcoming. This isn’t one of those “tourist farms” that source their products from all over the place and call it local, but a place where what you see is what you get. And there are a lot of those “tourist farms” around the state.

We bought some whole and chocolate milk and some fresh butter and I’m impressed with the taste, which is slightly different than what I’m used to. But more importantly, I have a new appreciation for the hard work and dedication that goes into making milk. The dairying life is a hard one and at Southern Swiss Dairy, it’s obvious that it’s a labor of love.

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Filed under --BURKE COUNTY GA--

Hogan Dairy Building, Laurens County

Farm Building Near Dexter Hogan Farm Laurens County GA Old Industrial Cooler Door Used for Wall Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2014

This is also probably part of the Hogan estate, seen in the preceding posts. There’s a nearly identical structure next door, but the interesting feature of this one is the old Viking cooler on the right.

Laurens County Farm Barn Viking Industrial Cooler Freezer Self Portrait Serve Yourself Copyright Brian Brown Photography Vanishing Media USA 2014

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Filed under --LAURENS COUNTY GA--

Franklin’s Dairy, Swainsboro

Coleman Dairy Ruins Swainsboro GA Emanuel County Office Silos Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2014

Cal Avery notes that this old dairy was long obscured by vegetation. I’m told it t operated from at least the 1940s until the late 1960s. The image above shows the front of the building, likely the office. Below is an image of the rear of the structure, where cows were kept and milked. Thanks to Cal for bringing it to my attention. Wade Peebles writes: The property had belonged to the late Mr. Jimmy Morgan, publisher of the Swainsboro Forest Blade, owner of the Ford dealership, and other business interests and owner of a good bit of land in Emanuel County, including McGarrh’s Mill Pond. He owned the land and sold it just before he died, I believe just last year at over 100 years of age. The land on Ga56, where the old dairy sits, was his first wife’s Father’s land. He was old Dr. Franklin, who owned the dairy. It was last operated in the early 1960s, by Lee Roy Smith.

Ruins of Coleman Dairy Operation Swainsboro GA Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2014

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Filed under --EMANUEL COUNTY GA--, Swainsboro GA

Vallotton’s Dairy, Valdosta

valdosta ga vallottons dairy farm photograph copyright brian brown vanishing south georgia usa 2011

This landmark on Bemiss Road remains, but more of the letters have fallen off the sign as of 2016. Vallotton’s was a very successful local dairy.

 

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Filed under --LOWNDES COUNTY GA--, Valdosta GA

Stafford Dairy Silo, Long County

long-county-ga-stafford-dairy-silo-photograph-copyright-brian-brown-vanishing-south-georgia-usa-2010

The dairy Herman Stafford operated here for many years was a well-known institution in Long County. He delivered milk door-to-door on Friday evenings and Saturdays as late as the late 1960s.

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Filed under --LONG COUNTY GA--