History of Maxey Valley Farms
Maxey Valley Farms derives its name from a place in Central Kentucky in Lincoln County, known as Maxey Valley where my ancestors settled having arrived from Virginia in the early 1800’s. The Maxey name can be traced back to 1693 with the arrival in the New World of a young man called Edward Maxey believed to be from England. He came as an indentured servant and by the Census of 1725 had taken a wife, had 8 children and owned several 400 acre patents of land in Virginia. His story is one of remarkable success. I am proud to be able to say that the Maxey name has been associated with agriculture in America since 1693.
Our farm is located in Northern Kentucky, about 20 miles south of Cincinnati, Ohio. It is, like so many, a family endeavor and has been since inception. Our daughters were active in the livestock side of our operations over the years and hopefully our grandchildren will feel an affinity for the Maxey legacy of land and family.
Since 1973, Maxey Valley Farms has been breeding Simmental Cattle. While not the first in the State of Kentucky to do so, for 34 years we have continued our relentless efforts to develop a select herd of what I call Traditional Simmentals when very few of the original Kentucky breeders remain. Most have either exited the business, or switched to other breeds, or switched to black factored Simmentals. As to the black Simmentals, a brief explanation is provided later in this introduction.
“Traditional” Simmentals are based on the genetics originally introduced to the United States in the 1960’s mostly via Canada originating in Europe. Within the Simmental Breed, there are various strains to include Swiss, French, German and Austrian. Each of these strains were developed in their home country for various purposes those being either milk, meat or draft or some combination of those. Most of the Simmentals in this country have a mixture of these genetics.
In recent times, many Simmental Breeders chose to change their Simmental operations by going to black or red Simmentals bred up from Black or Red Angus cattle. A long process of mating Traditional Simmentals to the angus based cattle eventually gave them what are now considered purebred Black or Red Simmentals. At Maxey Valley Farms we chose to continue breeding only “Traditional” Simmentals with emphasis on the maternal attributes of the breed and with focus on those described below as desirable characteristics. I am happy we made that decision.
In the past 20 years we have gone to great lengths and expense to find the best genetics available to develop Simmental cattle with the following desirable characteristics:
· Moderate framed, deep bodied and well muscled
· Solid patterned, preferably red or dark tan with white face and pigmented eyes
· Heavy milkers with well attached udders and uniform, average size teats
· Docile dispositions
· Polled and structurally correct with eye appeal
· Easy keepers that can convert less than ideal forage to extra pounds of beef in their calves at weaning
· Profit centers
In the early 1980’s, we began a serious upgrade on our herd with the importation of bred heifers from the prestigous Bar 5 Simmental Stock Farm in Manitoba, Canada. These were Fullblood Simmentals which differ from the purebred in that their entire genetic base only has Simmental genes wheras the purebreds have some distant gene other than Simmental. The Fullbloods go all the way back to the European Herdbooks and are certified 100% Simmental genes. Our herd contains both purebred and fullblood Simmental animals and this distinction is noted on their registration papers issued by the American Simmental Association of which our farm is a member with membership number 17828.
With the use of artificial insemination all the way back to 1973, and continuing to this day, we have been successful with our goals. And, to further enhance our efforts, we have imported a number of red polled fullblood Simmental bulls over the years. Their use has been extremely beneficial in our building of cow families. Bar 5 Stallone, Bar 5 Redford and Bar 5 John Wayne will have a long and lasting effect in our herd and we are grateful. The uniformity and productivity of the cow herd is a direct result of their use.
Concerning the various strains within the Simmental breed, we are particularly interested in what is known as the German and Austrian Fleckvieh. Most of our cattle carry the Fleckvieh influence and our current breeding plans call for additional emphasis. The Fleckvieh genetics most closely match the characteristics we have deemed most desirable for our herd as described above.
We typically have around 50 brood cows in the herd. Many of these cows have their basis in the early 1980’s importation of the bred heifers from Bar 5. And a few of the cow families carry genes tracing back to the early 1970’s.
We have available for sale big and muscular breeding bulls, fancy heifers, bred cows and occasionally cow/calf pairs. Our strength can be measured in the repeat buyers we have been fortunate to have over the years. I am particularly proud of the fact that several of our bull buyers have had multiple purchases with as many as 6 and 7 of our bulls working in their herds at a given time.
We also have semen available for both domestic and international shipment. Our senior herdsire, Bar 5 Stallone warrants specific mention. He has been used quite successfully around the U.S. andCanada. Of all the genetics used in the past 34 years here at Maxey Valley Farms, he had the most balanced traits and balanced results of all with extremely good calving ease, growth, milk and structural correctness. Both daughters and bulls he sired were simply superior.
We also have semen on Bar 5 Pol Blaze, a polled full fleckvieh herdsire we are heavily using through artificial insemination. Dark red, thick and meaty with all the attributes I look for in a herdsire, he is a special bull. Polled full fleckviehs are a rare find.
Thank you for visiting our website. Please contact us with inquires about our operation and cattle availability, semen sales, and pricing or to discuss this remarkable breed of beef cattle I so fondly call “Traditional” Simmentals.
Since 1693 the Maxey name has been associated with agriculture in America. The mission of Maxey Valley Farms is to communicate the importance and uniqueness of that heritage to subsequent generations and provide a strong foundation that will enable them to grow, prosper, and build on that legacy.