Mount Vernon Wakes Up – Feeding The Animals


(peaceful music) – [Narrator] Even before
the Estate officially opens to visitors, the residents of
Mount Vernon are wide awake at the crack of dawn. The livestock team arrives
everyday bright and early at 7:15 a.m. to feed the animals onsite. The team first prepares
the various types of feed. Each species of animal has
their own special mixture. Once the feed truck is
prepared, buckets of water and stacks of hay are loaded onto a truck. Then they’re off to
feed the hungry animals. Mount Vernon is home to
several heritage breeds. Many of these are descendants of animals that existed when George
Washington was alive. The pigs are a rare breed
known as Ossabaw Island hogs, that were brought to the new world over 400 years ago by Spanish explorers. Mount Vernon is also home to
cattle called Milking Devons. These cattle were essential
to George Washington. They were a source of
meat, dairy, and labor. The oxen are still used
for farming demonstrations. (pleasant music) The Hogs Island sheep are
a breed native to Virginia, dating back to the 1600s. Modern visitors can observe
shearing demonstrations of our sheep, and visit the
newborn lambs in the spring. Everyone needs a vacation now and then. The sheep and other animals
are periodically rotated in groups from the historic
part of the estate, and kept behind the scenes at the stables, where they relax and are tended
to for any medical issues. Washington himself was
an acclaimed horseman, and kept a full stable
of horses on the estate. Today we have draft
horses that pull wagons, plow, and harrow the fields. The father of his country was also known as the father of the American mule. George Washington began
breeding mules at Mount Vernon after he received a stud jack from the King of Spain in 1785. Part of running a successful
farm in both the 18th century and today, is insuring that
your team of animal workers are well cared for. Our livestock crew are
onsite 365 days a year maintaining the well-being of the animals with affection and care, the way George Washington
himself would have wanted it. (pleasant music)


2 Responses

  1. TheDcgj45

    May 10, 2017 2:54 am

    I love Mount Vernon. I will probably never see it in person. But these videos are great

  2. Brenda Parker

    June 1, 2017 2:54 pm

    Gotta love anyone who loves and cares for animals. Way to go Livestock Team! btw . What were the breeds of chickens raised there. Caroline Branham needs know. 😀


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