Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Before the Wool Mill

We would like to begin a series on the history of the Brown Sheep Company to fill in the holes left by our Frequently Asked Questions section.

Harlan Brown was a farmer in western Nebraska. For 35 years he farmed the family land. During this time, he developed an interest in wool and the sheep that produce it. As he collected larger and larger flocks of sheep, he became facinated with the wool production process. This fascination led to his involvement with the American Sheep Council, and the Midwest Wool Growers Association. This company officially started in 1980 as a family owned and operated business.

Over time, there were sheep and lots of them. Harlan worked to streamline his sheep growing and wool producing operation. By the end of the 1970's, the Brown family had over 1000 head of sheep. EDIT: a zero was left off--there were over 10,000 sheep at the height of the wool production process.

Harlan realized that there was profit to be had in adding value to the wool he was producing, and the idea for a wool mill was born. The Brown Sheep Company took its name from the Brown family and in 1980 the first equipment was purchased for the production of yarn.

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