Harvey Ranch History
Harvey Ranch is a fifth generation family run livestock and forestry company. Our operation strives to produce top quality products that include locally grown sheep wool for hand spinners, weavers, and fiber artists, market lamb for local restaurants as well as walnuts and almonds sold at local farmers markets. Our forestry operation manages the timber resources for timber production and livestock grazing as well as wildlife habitat enhancement. We take great pride in being able to sustain our family ranch for five generations. We believe that if we take care of the land, the land will take care of us.
For the past three thousand years this beautiful land has supported indigenous people. Records show the Maidu and the Washoe Native American tribes passed through and summer in the Sierra Valley. The tribes survived mainly by utilizing the camas flower blub, which they ground using grinding rocks. Our home and venue is built around some of these ancient Native American summer grounds that feature grinding stones.
As time progressed the property was utilized for its looming timber stands. Right next door the Calpine mill was established in the early 1800s and soon owned by the Blagen family. The family ran the Davey-Johnson Lumber Company and logged the forest surrounding our ranch. The company established a railroad that ran through the property; which remnants you can still see today.
In 1874 the Summers family homesteaded on the property. They raised cattle as a family business until father and son John Jacob and E.E. McPherrin started grazing sheep on the property in the early 1900s. The McPherrin family purchased the property in 1932. Calvert McPherrin and his brothers Fayne and Laverne continued to summer sheep here until the property was handed down to Anna Harvey, the great granddaughter of John Jacob McPherrin. Anna and Don Harvey made it their homestead in 1995 and continued to manage and utilize the land.
At this point in their lives, Don and Anna, focused on timber production, until 2003 when they purchased a fiber spinning flock of 25 sheep. Anna may have been a 4th generation rancher, but the world of fine and natural fiber was incredibly different than the commercial fiber industry that she had known. To expand her knowledge, Anna traveled to fiber shows to make connections and sell fleeces. As she became more comfortable in the fiber industry Harvey Ranch began to expand. Harvey Ranch participated and still does in local farmers markets and events in the community. We’ve offered fiber workshops, participated in the Sierra Valley’s Art and Agriculture Tour, held farm tours for local school groups, and corresponded with Plumas Eureka State Park to participate in Gold Discovery Days. With our new knowledge and love of the fiber world came the desire to share our passions and knowledge with the community.
In 2016 we decided we wanted to share more than just knowledge with the community. We wanted to share the breath-taking beauty of the Sierra Valley, to give the gift of dreams coming true, to share this unique experience of a venue on a working ranch, and to make memories of gold. So come join us, hear the gentle ring of sheep bells in the distance and say “I do” in God’s country.