Thursday, May 26, 2011

Bovina earmarks

Bovina is a tiny village in the Catskills, lovely and rural. There used to be many family dairy farms; now very few. I wanted to buy a house there just so I could say I live in Bovina. So much more etymologically interesting than Andes or Margaretville. (There is also a nearby town called Delhi. Pronounced "Del-hi".)

Speaking of etymology, thanks to Bovina Town Historian Ray LaFever, I now know that earmarks aren't just Congressional pet projects--they are identification marks on an animal. Bovina farmers used them to identify their sheep. Mr. LaFever found, in the town records, a book of earmarks dating from 1820 to 1836. Next to each farmer's name is a description of the earmark and some drawings. You can read more on Mr. LaFever's blog, and I must give credit to the Watershed Post where I first read about it. Now, isn't that interesting?


  1. Hello Jen:
    Litle pieces of information, such as this, which one gleans throughout life are always, we feel, most fascinating. And one never knows when one might be glad to draw upon them.

  2. learn something new every day!

  3. Jen,
    Very interesting! Fun learning new facts!

  4. Very nice post there! You know India's capital is also called Delhi (Del-hee):-))))Keep up the great work! Lovely blog!!!

  5. Bovina... love it! Makes you wonder about the person who named the town, doesn't it? Much nicer than the original name for Gainesville Fla (where I went to school) which was called Hogtown. Fun post!