The Piggery at Anna Dean Farm
The Piggery was built in 1912 at a cost exceeding $50,000. Adjusting for inflation from 1912 to the present, this would be like spending over $750,000 in terms of present day dollars. The Piggery was used initially to house the Berkshire swine on the Anna Dean Farm until 1915. In 1915 a case of cholera was detected in the herd of swine and the entire herd had to be destroyed. After this occurred the Piggery was completely scrubbed down with bleach and sheep were moved into the structure. The swine herd was replenished, but they were moved to simple wooden "A" frame structures behind the Robinson Ave. Green houses. The sheep would occupy the Piggery only from 1915 to 1917. O.C. Barber did not like the fact that the sheep pulled the grass out by its roots, thus killing it, when they grazed. This was the same problem that caused friction between cattle ranchers and sheep herders in the Old West. Sheep can destroy the grass lands that they graze on leaving only a dusty area, where the grass once grew. Cattle and other grazing animals only nibble at the top of the grass, thus leaving it alive. Tiring of seeing the Piggery sit in the middle of a growing desert, and having to take the sheep further and further from the Piggery to graze, Mr. Barber sold the entire herd off in 1917. From 1917 until 1920, the Piggery was used to house young calves on the Anna Dean Farm and renamed the Calf Barn. All of the grass surrounding the Piggery had to be replanted after the sheep were sold off.
Backstory and Context