We are a family run farm. We raise Fallow deer, which are native to Europe and Mesopotamia. They are small, spotted deer with palmated antlers (much like a moose). Their meat is fine-grained, tender, and flavorful. Chefs around the world consider Fallow deer to be the premier venison. We raise ours on pasture in the spring, summer, and fall, and on traditionally grown feeds of haylage and baled hay with supplemental 16% protein and shell corn in the winter. There are no feed supplements or additives, (but they do have free choice vitamins and minerals).
The deer are processed under Vermont State inspection at local Vermont packing plants. All products are vacuum packaged. We process once a month. Venison that is not pre-ordered is immediately frozen to preserve its freshness. We deliver throughout Vermont. Our venison is available year-round. We are a member of the Vermont Fresh Network.
Situated on what was an island in the old Champlain Sea, and extending down to the old lake bed, LedgEnd Farm comprises 420 acres. It has 291 acres of crop and pasture land of which approximately 100 acres are fenced. There is are 108 acres of timberland, including an 8 acre sugar bush. Much of the timberland is rare Champlain Valley Clay plain forest. The land has always been in agriculture, mostly cows, but now we raise Fallow deer. How did this piece of paradise go from subsistence farming to dairy to deer?
In 1786, Jonathan Preston from New Canaan, NY settled what was to become Munger St on lot No. 42. Then in 1787 Nathaniel Munger and his son-in-law Nathan Case, a blacksmith, came from Norfolk, CT settling on lot No. 43. Another Munger, Edmund, came in 1788 or 1789 and settled on lot No. 44. Around the same time a third Munger, Johnathan, settled on lot No. 41. Edmund and Jonathan didn’t stay long, moving to Ohio around 1797.
Sometime prior to 1792, a fourth brother, Dudley Munger had settled on lot No.12, near the present day Case St and Mead Lane, but in that year sold it to Nathan Case and bought lot No. 45. The lot had had a log cabin built on it by Phineas Phelps. Finally in 1789, Reuben Munger settled on lot No. 40, making five members of the Munger family living on the same road and thus Munger St. was born. Each lot was 50 rods (825 ft.) wide by 320 rods (one mile) long.
Lot No. 46, just south of Dudley’s, was owned by Seymour Sellick. His sister and Dudley married and both families “built a two story house of the same dimensions, only a few rods apart…raised in the same day and both painted red (1).” Selick’s house burned in 1834 and a new house was built which still stands. Dudley’s lasted until 1940, when it too burned, and the present house was erected by Gerald and Theo Sawyer. They called their farm Ledgeholm and operated the farm with registered Holstein cattle from 1939-1984.
After Gerald retired, the farm continued in dairy with tenant farmers, until we purchased it in 1991. Unaware of the previous name, we named it LedgEnd Farm because it’s where the limestone ledge ends, and it also was a pun on ‘legend’, as Fallow and Red deer were the King’s deer of legend in England. The Fallow deer followed in 1995. We now have the largest Fallow deer farm in New England, and hope to keep them on the land for many generations to come. To this end, in 2022 we conserved the entire farm with the Vermont Land Trust.
(1) History of the Town of Middlebury Swift pp. 210-213