Rochester Hills Museum at Van Hoosen Farm
The Calf Barn was built in 1927 and housed the newborn calves. Newborns were raised by farm workers.
Very early one morning the 'phone rang. Morris' voice came over it: "Retta just 'dropped' a bull calf". I thrilled. Retta was one of our top females. She had been giving birth to heifer calves, which was fine, but we wanted her to give us a male calf which might develop into a future herd sire. This she had now done.
Dr. Sara Van Hoosen Jones
Dr. Sara Van Hoosen Jones built the Bull Barn in 1927. It housed the bulls, the most valuable animals in the heard. The bull pens allowed the bulls to exercise. Breeding stalls were added at the ends of three of the pens. The interior of the barn reveals that there was minimal contact between the farmers and the bulls. The mean temperament of the bulls kept every farm hand cautious around them. The most valuable bulls on the Van Hoosen Farm were Carnation, King Bessie Ormsby Pieterje 29th, and Montvic Rag Apple Baron.
I only knew as a little girl that to go to Grandma's house [and farm] afforded me the greatest pleasure I could experience. ... One day a cow was missing, which necessitated a hunt. Homer could walk much faster than I so he left me and went over the hill after the missing bovine. As was the custom, the bull ran with the herd. In a moment or
two I looked up and saw that the bull had spied me, whereupon he began to paw and snort and approach me very slowly. I picked up a stick and shouted "Homer, Homer, Homer!" Over the hill he came, taking the bull by surprise from the rear. I had not dared to run for my legs were too short to make any needed progress.
Dr. Sarah Van Hoosen Jones