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Otto C. Jensen - "To a Grand Little Cow
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From July 9th, 1962 ADCA Newsletter
Dexter is a grand little Cow;
You'll often wonder exactly how,
For size, she produces so much milk
She does! and just as smooth as silk,
She has other qualities, soon you'll know,
Especially at the Cattle show.
With ribbons blue, and champions grand,
She brings home prizes and cash in hand.
Gentle and affectionate, easy to mind;
Quick to respond to treatment kind;
A pleasure to own, a pleasure to raise.
Much, much more can be said in her praise,
But let's stop right here and now:
Simply say, A Dexter is a Grand Little Cow.
Jensen was the owner of the Tak-Sca-Du-Hav Farm
in Lancaster, New York. By 1963, his herd of
Dexters totaled about 100 head, and was one
of the largest Dexter herds in the world at
that time. Otto Jensen served as President of
the American Dexter Cattle Association from
1959 to 1965.
the April 1973 American Dexter Cattle Association
newsletter, Palmer H. Langdon wrote the following
entitled, "My Last Ride with Otto Jensen":
was October 18, 1969 and the Dexter meeting
at Albany, New York had just concluded. Otto
Jensen had come by train, as he always did,
arriving very late the previous night after
milking his cows on his farm near Buffalo. In
fact, he had gotten to the hotel long after
the rest of us had turned in, but he was right
on hand to take part in the breakfast session
putting forth his positive ideas on the way
to promote the sale and breeding of Dexter cattle.
After a look at the timetable, Otto saw that
no train would come through Buffalo until much
later in the afternoon, so I said, "Why
not ride with me as far as Utica?"--to
which he readily agreed.
we rolled along past farms at their autumn best,
we talked of how much Dexter cattle had meant
to both of us. Otto and I had met just ten years
earlier at the home of the secretary of our
Association, Mrs. Daisy Moore, in Decorah, Iowa.
As we had left that evening to return to the
little hotel, Otto remarked to me, "We've
got to keep this thing (the Association) going
strong or all we have is beefsteak." The
next day we had a nice conference at the farm
of our founder, John Logsdon, father of Daisy
Moore. As a newcomer to
Dexters, I had listened intently to the conversation
of these two veteran cattlemen with their hopes
of enlarging the numbers of our little breed.
Otto had traveled by train all the way to Decorah
for the meeting each year.
April 1, 1959 until April 25, 1965, Otto served
as President of the Association, never missing
a meeting and always getting up a large exhibit
of Dexters for the Erie County Fair. He was
a "twilight" cattleman, working at
his food brokerage business during the day,
while milking his herd at dawn and evening.
At one point, as a result of acquisitions to
keep registered stock from going to market,
he was running 100 head.
President, Otto always stressed the importance
of selling "a package" to a new breeder
of three bred heifers and a bull calf, so that
the new member had enough stock to mean something
and to grow with, rather than selling single
animals. Otto always also stressed the importance
of getting the young people on the farm interested,
of working with 4-H groups and the like. He
felt very strongly that if the owners had daily
care of their stock, they would become as attached
as he was and would stay with Dexters.
we approached Utica, I had a feeling that Otto
was rather tired from his strenuous life and
urged him to take things a little easier now
that he was in his seventies, but he said that
was impossible with the shortage of farm help,
and besides, he wanted to expand his herd and
promote the breed. The Utica station was nearly
deserted when I dropped him off, and I remarked,
"Otto, it's the end of the railroad era
- looks like you are the only passenger waiting
for the Buffalo train." We shook hands
and I left him, agreeing to meet
again soon. A few days later, Otto was found
dead on his barn floor amongst the cattle he
loved so much.
the newsletter, Daisy Moore added the following:
ADCA is grateful to Palmer Langdon, one of our
Directors, for sharing the above tribute to
a fine man, Otto Jensen. It was a small incident,
a sharing of a few short hours in a busy day,
but it tells much of Otto's character and his
great love of animals. Otto did much to help
unite the Dexter people and he served the Association
with distinction. He won many trophies when
he took his herd to shows, particularly in Hamburg,
New York. His herd was one of the finest in
America and he was very proud of his Dexters."
wish we could have known this man in our time.