Cynthia Creech operates Artemis Farm on 120 aces in New Lebanon. Although she grew up in the city of Knoxville, Tennessee, her mother bought a small run-down “farm” in the country when Cynthia was eleven. Cynthia loved their few Angus cows and old quarter horse. It wasn’t until she reached her mid-thirties that the farming bug bit again, and hard. In 1986, she read a blurb in a country magazine by a widow who needed to sell her husband’s cattle after his death. The farmer, Everett Randall, had a rare breed of cows known as Randall cattle. Cynthia bought some of the cows, found farmland for them, and brought them back to health. The Randalls are a triple purpose heritage breed from southern Vermont, used for meat, dairy, and draft power.
Cynthia’s cows were some of the last remaining Randall cattle. She not only had to learn how to care for them, but also develop an understanding of genetic conservation. Cynthia has dedicated herself to preserving the breed’s genes. She learned as she went, reading and getting advice from geneticists. Cynthia wanted to return the cows to their native New England, and eventually brought them to New York. Here in New Lebanon, her cows are in conditions close to their native environment.
Cynthia retired from a job with the federal government at age 49. She has since devoted her energy, finances, time and love to preserving the Randalls and securing their future.