MacFarlane Pheasants, Inc. is proud of its status as the largest pheasant producer in North America. They are even more proud of the family who fought to build the business beginning 89 years ago. It was a business built through both triumph and tragedy. The entire story was featured in a three-part series on our blog site, in 2015. What follows is a summary of those articles.
1929-Ken MacFarlane started raising pheasants on his Dad’s farm in rural Janesville, Wisconsin. He moved the operation twice and settled on 15 acres on Center Ave in Janesville.
1935-Ken’s brother, Don, started a pheasant business right next door to his brother, Ken.
1940-Ken MacFarlane died in the Great Armistice Day Storm of 1940.
1941-Don MacFarlane bought Ken’s farm and combined it with his own.
1945-Don MacFarlane contracted polio while traveling in Minnesota. He fought for his life and won, though he would use crutches and a wheelchair for the remainder of his life. He continued to run the business with the same enthusiasm, with his main emphasis being customer relations.
1950’s-The farm was growing and the city was encroaching on the farm. The business was moved to its current location. Jim Adamson, Don’s brother in law, joined the business and ran the day-to-day operations for the next 35 years, while Don ran the office. The business flourished with excellent customer service and pheasant production growing every year.
1979-Bill MacFarlane returned to the farm to help his Dad, whose health was failing.
1985-Don MacFarlane passed away and Bill MacFarlane took over the operation of the farm.
2017-Bill MacFarlane promotes Brad Lillie to the position of Chief Operating Officer and Sarah Pope to the position of General Manager.
2018-MacFarlane Pheasants, Inc. continues to be successful with the help of great managers and crew members. It is guided by the history of excellent customer service and top-notch pheasant production.
If you would like to read the entire history in more detail please click on the links for the three-part series: The History of MacFarlane Pheasants-Part 1, The History of MacFarlane Pheasants-Part 2, and The History of MacFarlane Pheasants-Part 3.
Memories of the Past at MacFarlane Pheasants