The late Hubert & Argle Teter

The Teter family has lived by the philosophy for many years that "Any job worth doing is worth doing right". This mindset, which has flown through the veins of four generations, has lead us to the solid foundation that we stand on today. Since the early 1890's when Don Teter moved to the vast pasture lands of the Sinks of Gandy in Randolph County, WV, farming has been our families' livelihood. Our great-grandfather Don began as a caretaker of his land and later purchased the property to begin building his commercial cattle & sheep operation. As his father, our grandfather Hubert, continued the operation by adding farm land in the Tygarts Valley, located in the southern part of the county. In the late 1940's our grandparents, Hubert and Argle Teter, moved to the valley to start their own farming enterprise. After moving to the area they purchased the farms that began the groundwork for the establishment of our operation. They used this land for winter grazing/summer haying and then returned the cattle to the mountain pastures for the summer months. 

Mary and the late Dale Elza
Grandad & Grandma were lifelong self-employed farmers and worked on the land each day in order to provide for their family and remain prosperous in their operation. Their hard work and dedication were the stepping stones for the next generation. After the passing of Hubert Teter in 1996 and Argle Teter in 1997, Teter Farms was then carried on by their one son Hubert "Danny" Teter II. In 1982 Danny, our dad, married Donna Elza, who grew up on a cattle & sheep operation in Whitmer, WV, located in the eastern part of the county. She worked along with her parents, Dale and Mary Elza, and her siblings to make it a true family operation. Just as the Teter Family they have always worked hard to accomplish their dreams and have never been afraid to get their hands dirty. 

The late Donna & Danny Teter

Danny & Donna were self-employed farmers, who strived to properly manage the existing farms and increase the owned acres by purchasing additional tracts of land to ensure a stable future. Our parents worked hard to accomplish their dreams of building a farm enterprise. Along with our parents, I, Zachary and my sister, Natasha, worked together to make it a true family farm. We all had chores that were essential to the daily operations of the business. My sister and I were also given livestock at a very young age; in the hopes that we would stay involved knowing we had something to call our own. We can both still remember those foundation animals, so I would say that philosophy was successful.
Natasha Teter

Danny & Donna Teter could best be described as "True Farmers" meaning they made their living solely from agriculture. The ability to farm full time in the Eastern United States tends to be a rarity in our modern society, however they managed to succeed in developing one of the largest cattle operations in the state. Just as they built the business to the point they could release the reins somewhat to the next generation, tragedy struck. Our father was found to have colon cancer and passed away in March, 2005. Our dad was a man that could never be replaced and we will always carry the same blood and values that he strived to maintain. Dad could of been described by the country western song " Daddy's Hands", he truly was a great man and he will never be forgotten for his accomplishments with his family and in the community. Despite the sadness and uncertainty our mother Donna, my sister Natasha, and I pledged to keep the farm running strong. My mom took on the largest burden as my sister and I were still pursuing our educations and could only help on evenings and weekends, for the first few years. 

As the farm again began to get back on track and prosper once again another great tragedy struck the family. In a discovery in late 2011 our mother was found to have esophageal cancer and lived only a short 2 months, passing away in January, 2012. Our mother was a woman that skills seemed to be endless; she could accomplish anything her heart desired. Family and Friends alike all agree that she was the hardest working woman anyone has ever known. Our parents made a great team and by working side by side both possessed qualities that made Teter Farms the operation it is today.

After the loss of our mother we were again forced to reevaluate the future of the operation. Shortly before my mother's passing I became engaged to Elizabeth Yost, whom I married in May, 2012. We have since become the operators of Teter Farms. We both have degrees in Animal & Veterinary Science from WVU, and feel confident that with our family experiences and education we can take Teter Farms into the future. In April of 2013 Beth and I were blessed with our first son Clay Daniel Teter, he has brought so much joy back to our family and is already showing great promise as a young farmer. In May of 2015 Clay became the big brother to Bryce Zachary Teter. My sister Natasha is now married and resides in Grant County, WV, where she farms with her husband on his family farm operation. She is also employed by the West Virginia Department of Agriculture as a Nutrient Management Specialist. The Teter family is once again working to ensure success for the next generation of farmers.

While working hard to keep the farm in operation we continued to improve the genetics of the cow herd, which is the beating heart of the operation. The Teter cow herd went through many transitions as other herds did in the last century. The commercial herd consisted of mostly Hereford genetics until the mid 1970’s when Simmental was crossed on the Hereford cows to increase growth and maternal characteristics. The resulting progeny from this breed combination were far superior to the original parental breed. This cross was then maintained until the mid 1980’s when Angus was added to the breeding lineup to decrease the mature size and improve the carcass characteristics of the Simmentals. The cow herd then shifted to strictly Angus Genetics from the mid 1980’s until 2005 when Simmental was reintroduced. The bull battery was then changed over to Purebred Simmental in order to produce half-blood cows that will increase heterosis, longevity and maternal characteristics, aiming to increase our profit margin.  An elite herd of Registered Angus cows and Registered Simmental cows have also been in development since 2004. The Angus herd began with the purchase of 5 heifers from Larry & Helen Hedrick of Petersburg, WV. The Simmental herd, which is now becoming our main focus for the purebred sector of the operation, began with the purchase of heifers from Gateway Simmental in Montana and Moser Ranch in Kansas.

In addition to the cattle enterprise, we have maintained a commercial sheep operation since the early 1900’s with the addition of purebred Suffolk’s in the 1980’s and purebred Dorset’s in 1995. Our sheep are used for multispecies grazing to maintain invasive species and to supply the ever growing demand for lamb in consumer’s daily diets.

Our herds have changed in size by a significant amount over the past several decades. Our cow herd has grown from a small commercial operation, consisting of only 110 commercial cows in 1996 to one of the largest commercial cattle operations in the state, consisting of over 425 brood cows. Our operation contains over 6,000 acres of owned and rented land that we continuously use; only the best, conservation practices to manage. We are currently maintaining herds of Registered Angus Cows and Registered Simmental Cows to produce bulls and heifers that will help move our customers forward. We have been using EPDs (Expected Progeny Differences) for one of our bull selection criteria's and have purchased performance tested bulls for use in the commercial operation since the mid-1970's. The sheep flock has also been continued and now consist of over 250 brood ewes that are deep bodied and production oriented. We maintain a flock of Commercial Suffolk/Dorset Cross, Commercial Katahdin, Purebred Suffolk, and Purebred Dorset ewes. We sell purebred rams of each breed on an annual basis and occasionally sell a select group of ewe lambs to area farmers. 

Our feeding program consists of mountain pastures from May-November. The livestock are then hauled to the valley for winter feeding and birthing. The Tygart Valley is a very fertile valley with soil that produces an abundant hay crop for the 5+ months of winter feeding. The mature cows are maintained on hay and mineral supplementation throughout the winter and the heifers are maintained on hay/mineral and 3lb of grain per day. The mountain pastures in the area are very lush and provide for more than adequate weight gain in the summer months. The cool season in the high altitudes known as the "Sinks of Gandy" of Randolph County, WV allow the cattle to graze more often with less stress from environmental factors. 

We at Teter Farms hope to bring our genetic progress and family values together to become your source for quality feeder cattle and seedstock. Our background has allowed us to obtain many life experiences, however the consumer driven world is an ever changing place that demands progressive agriculturalist that can meet the needs of the people. Therefore, we encourage you to contact us so we can tell you the rest of the story!!!! 

Sincerely,
Zachary Teter - Teter Farms

   
Teter Farms
5315 Back Road,
Beverly WV 26253
Home Ph: 304.338.6856
Zach's Cell: 304.704.9555
Beth's Cell: 304.642.8222
Natasha's Cell: 304.642.8223

teterfarms@yahoo.com
   
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