Nourse Farm History
Nourse Farm was established in 1722 by William and Ebenezer Nurse and for almost three centuries the Nourse family has farmed these same acres. Very much an integral part of the Westborough community then and now, the Nourses are anticipative of the 300th Anniversary celebration and look forward hosting a farm heritage event in June. Until then, read about two of the notable inputs that our family has made.
Joel Nourse Joel Nourse was a gifted blacksmith who perfected his craft working in the barn that is still found on Nourse Farm today. Joel is the designer and creator of the Nourse Eagle Plow, a plow that in 1842 revolutionized farming in the rocky New England soil with its smooth surfaces and uniformity that facilitated even the most difficult tillage. The Nourse Eagle Plow was a best selling plow in the country for over a decade and is currently housed in the Smithsonian Museum of American History
Benjamin Alden Nourse Benjamin Alden Nourse was a local Selectman and a State Representative, thriving farmer, meticulous business man, and loving father. At the height of his agricultural career in the late 1800's, Nourse Farm boasted 57 different varieties of apples that were so delicious, clients in England had them regularly shipped across the Atlantic. Much of the Nourse Family history was well documented in the detailed journal entries recorded by Benjamin Alden. His thoughtful pen chronicled all Nourse Farm activities from “ploughed fields” and “harvested apples” to “made sleds for the boys” and “celebrated Ernest’s 6th birthday”.
Alex Gross, a descendent of Benjamin, recently conducted extensive research on the journals and discovered how this "simple farmer without a college education turned a small farm into a thriving business, which competed with other farms on the local, regional and national level." Read selections from Alex's research.
Nourse Farm Present Day
Today, the 140-acre Nourse Farm is the 10th oldest continuously operating family business in the country. Over time, farm operations have varied from production for consumption to dairy farming to its current berry specialization. Currently the 8th and 9th generation of Westborough Nourses are directly involved with Nourse Farm and contribute to its operations in various ways. David Nourse owns the farm, while brother Jonathan Nourse operates it. Next generation contributors include Timothy Nourse, who manages the on-line presence, his wife Catherine, who leads community outreach, including on-farm nutrition education and food literacy sessions and siblings Karen and William Nourse who supplied most of the photos for the site.