Insulated by Turley Creek and the North Fork, and adorned with apple trees and native flowers, Turley Creek Farm in Broadway is home to Pam and Dennis Miller. Pam and Dennis both grew up on farms in Pendleton County, West Virginia, where Dennis actually raised chickens to pay for his college education. After getting married, they bought their current farm, where they’ve lived for twenty years and raised three children. When the kids were little, they’d raise sheep and show them at the fair or livestock sales. Pam and Dennis are active members of the West Virginia Purebred Sheep Breeders Association, where they served as president and secretary for ten years. 

Like most farmers, Pam can’t really describe a “typical day.” There are multiple chicken checks, plus frequent equipment inspections. Lambing season brings another whole set of responsibilities, plus tending the cattle, growing corn for silage, and making hay. Dennis works elsewhere during the day, so Pam is the “watchful eye” on the farm. Their two beloved guard dogs help keep an eye on the sheep. 

Pam and Dennis switched to Shenandoah Valley Organic because they wanted to grow healthier chickens and “put pride back into our work.” All their chicks, provided by the Longenecker hatchery, arrive in good health, and being able to raise fewer birds according to organic standards creates a “better growing environment.” Before SVO, they grew for big companies that took shortcuts to save money, resulting in sicker birds. Now, as you can see from the photographs, their chickens thrive on this tranquil, verdant patch of land in Rockingham County. 

Lynda Bostrom