Bio: Bottlemy, Wareen & Joanne (KaMilJo Dairy Farms - 1974)
Contact: Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon
Surnames: Bottlemy, Dopp, Gaddis, Rice, Rohloff
----Source: Tribune Record Gleaner (Loyal, Clark Co., WI) 6/06/1974
The Bottlemy’s (KaMilJo Dairy Farms - 1974)
Mingling with Mary (By Mary Woods)
Mr. and Mrs. Warren Bottlemy stand beside the sign that is located on their farm. Referred to as KaMilJo Farms, the name refers to their daughter, Karen, Bottlemy’s middle name, Milton, and Joanne.
Bumper stickers seem to be the latest fad of getting a message across to people. Wherever you go, you see them on cars, trucks, and in almost any store, making remarks about the world’s situation or promoting some type of recreational facility or business place. Located on Highway 73, and approximately six miles north of Greenwood, are three signs that tell the story of one American Dairyman, and his thoughts towards the people that may pass by. The sign which reads, “We Use Your Products, Do You Use Ours?” is located on the farm land of Mr. and Mrs. Warren Bottlemy of route 1, Owen. Mr. Bottlemy is co-chairman of the June Dairy Month Committee in Clark County and this reporter visited the farm and got the family’s thoughts on farming today and in the future.
Born and raised in the Alden, Ill. area, Bottlemy began his farming career by helping his father out on the family farm. He worked with his father until he was married, after which time, he and his wife, Joanne, purchased a can rout in the Alden area. While having the route, Bottlemy continued working on a farm with his brother-in-law. Nine months prior to selling the mild route, the couple began renting a farm on shares and did so for three years, and later decided to purchase the 112-acre farm that had 35 milk cows.
Although the purchasing of the farm had begun, Mr. and Mrs. Bottlemy came to Clark County with the intentions of visiting some friends, but the trip proved to be more than they had expected. Bottlemy explains, “We had mentioned to our friends that since land was so expensive in Illinois we had given some thought to purchasing a farm in this area, but didn’t expect our friends to have a real estate person lined up to take us around the county and see different farms. It was in September when we did come up the grist time, and in December we purchased the farm that we will reside on. At the time of purchase, the farm consisted of 160-acres, but we later sold 40 acres. All the land is used for haylage, corn, and oats. We also rent three other farms adjoining our own farm that consist of 312-acres with 290-acres being suitable for crops.”
According to Bottlemy, the farm started out with 38 head of dairy cattle, and at the present time, 130 head of cattle are on the farm. A total of 800,000 pounds of milk is taken in during the year with the average cow producing 15,000 pounds, with the butterfat count being 568 pounds per cow. All the Grade A milk is delivered to Clover Cream Dairy Products Co. in Marshfield.
Reflecting on the past and present cost of milk, Bottlemy states, “When we began milking we were receiving $2.80 per 100 pounds of milk and today we received approximately $8.30 depending on the butterfat test. If the price of milk would stay about $8, there is no reason a farmer can’t make a go of his farm, but when the price drops below that it makes the living kind of hard. I have to say that this past year was the first year that we really did make a good go of the farm, but the reason could be related to the fact that we didn’t have to buy so much feed for the cattle as in the past.”
Asked for his comments on the importing and exporting of dairy products, and the prices, Bottlemy states that he had read statistics that show imports for 1973 have taken away $340 million that could have been kept in our country, but were paid to some foreign country. He explained that when milk prices do go down, as they are now, and money is paid towards imports rather than to our country’s farmers, not only does the farmer lose, but the entire country loses, and the picture can be reversed to the fact that when the farmer prospers so does the entire country.
In checking the import of dairy products into the country, Arvid Dopp, Clark County Agriculture agent, states that a recent report shows that for the first quarter of 1974, 1.4 billion pounds of dairy products that have been imported are equivalent to approximately 1.4 billion pound of milk. Dopp also stated that this is up one billion pounds from the same period in 1973. It was also reported by Dopp that dairy products exports for the same period are equivalent to 0.1 billion pounds of milk.
Turning to what must be done to prevent the milk prices from going down, Bottlemy suggested that the use of imitation milk needs to be watched. “People are always concerned with imitation butter, but when they know that most of the products used in margarine comes from the farm, the picture is a little brighter, for the farmer is not completely out of the picture. But when people start to sue milk products that do not have any farm ingredients in them, the problem arises.” (It was checked out by this reporter that all the margarines sold in the area stores contain farm products, such as soybeans, cottonseeds, and/or nonfat dry milk, and corn oil).
Bottlemy continued with his ideas as to what the farmers can do to keep the price of milk up with the suggestion and need of farmers to advertise their products. “We have to get out and let the people know what products we have and the food value that each product contains.”
With a deep belief in the need of advertising the dairy products, Bottlemy states that his being a farmer and being on the June Dairy Month committee is the first year that a farmer has been co-chairman of the committee. He explained that throughout June different programs and contests will be conducted in the county including a poster contest, and a bake-off contest to be held June 25, at the Clark Electric Auditorium. The Longwood 4-H Club will sponsor two dairy tours. One will be at his farm and the other will take place at the Art Gaddis farm near Withee. “By conducting the tours, we will give the city children and other interested persons the opportunity to visit a farm, and see the complete operation of farming in full swing,” remarked Bottlemy.
Getting away from the head man, the picture turns to the head lady in the family, Joanne. Speaking about farming, she states “You can never plan too much ahead in the farming business for when it rains you work inside, and when it is nice out, you work outside. The weather is perhaps the most important element in the life of a farmer, for it affects his life every day.” Mr. Bottlemy states, “Joanne is the “Gofor” in the family, for a recent report shows that if a farm wife had to be paid for her work, she would have a salary of $17,000 a year, and not too many farmers could afford that type of salary.” Joanne does all the milk house work, and helps out in the fields, and in the barn whenever needed – she is definitely an asset to the farm and the family.”
Mr. and Mrs. Bottlemy have five boys, Greg who is a full-time employee on the farm, Kurt and Mark still attending school in Owen, Ronald, married and employed in Neillsville, and Douglas who works at Greenwood Homes, all of whom have been active in FFA and 4-H. Also, residing at the farm, is Mrs. Bottlemy’s father, Matt Rice, who, according to Mr. and Mrs. Bottlemy, “takes care of the garden, and helps out with some of the chores.”
Besides farming, Mr and Mrs. Bottlemy find time to enjoy a night of bowling at Hills Bowling Alley in Loyal. Joanne bowls for Rohloff Bowlettes and Bottlemy is a member of the Longwood Cheese Factory team. Joanne enjoys being a member of the Longwood Homemakers and the family is member of the United Methodist Church in Greenwood. The Bottlemy’s are also members of the American Dairy Association.
“The farmer is a very important businessman in the world today,” states Bottlemy, “for without his products that he works for year around, the eating habits and the living style of the world would be drastically changed. – But too many times people do forget that “We Use Your Products – Do You Use Ours?”
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