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Smith Robbins

Smith Robbins
Smith Robbins

Eminent Farmer

County: Codington

Smith Robins, chosen eminent farmer in 1954, farmed with his parents Mr. and Mrs. Isaac Robins, at Kankakee, Illinois, after the turn of the century.

In 1913 they traded their Illinois farmstead for a farm between Florence, South Dakota, and Watertown, South Dakota, in Codington County. The family arrived there on October 16, 1913 to find a small house and small barn as the only buildings on the place. The first year on his new farm Mr. Robins erected a large barn and started the tree planting program that he has continued to the present.

The type of agriculture he found here was new to him and for his first crops he imitated his neighbors, planting wheat, oats, and barley. The following year, Robins planted sixty acres of corn which attracted attention in the area. Others had planted small patches and turned their stock into it, but Robins was among the first to try picking.

Robins now operates 1,280 acres in partnership with his sons, Wayne and Charles. Six hundred acres are in pasture and the rest in alfalfa and cropland. Emphasis is now put on livestock in the farm enterprise. The farm lies on gently rolling land and much of the cropland is farmed on the contour.

Robins served on the school board twenty years ago and helped to build their neighborhood school. He was one of the organizers of the Codington-Clark rural electrification co-operative.

Forty-one years ago the Lakeview Farm club, a community group, was organized in the Robins home. The group is still active and holds periodic dinners and programs which attract capacity crowds.

In addition to sons Wayne and Charles there are two daughters; Lois, now Mrs. Grant Kellogg, and Marlys, now Mrs. Harold Muller, both farm housewives in the Watertown, Florence area. There are twelve grandchildren.