By Roger Walk
Today Eleanor, the most recent addition to the livestock exhibit, had a special treat with lots of juicy apples while posing in the warm sunshine of her new home at Henricus Historical Park.
The Chesterfield County Farm Bureau had donated “Eleanor,” a rare Tamworth Pig, to the Henricus Historical Park to further enhance the living history museum’s partnership with the Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom (AITC). AITC is funded by Virginia’s agricultural community and is a national program that fosters a greater understanding of how agriculture touches everyone’s life every day.
As explained by Margaret E. Carlini, education supervisor, Henricus Historical Park, now 5-month-old Eleanor will be available as an exhibit for such teaching purposes. In the Agriculture in the Classroom program, elementary and middle school educators are informed about how they can bring knowledge and understanding of present and historic agriculture practices to their science and social studies students.
Wayne Robertson, proprietor of the Cardinal Hill Farm, where Eleanor was raised during its first few month, explained that the red-haired pig will grow to triple its current 150 lb weight and will reach a respectable 2-feet height .
The Tamworth domestic pig, named after its alleged place of origin in the UK, is among the oldest of pig breeds descending from wild boars. It was brought from Europe to our continent in the late 1800s. Today Tamworth pigs are rare, because as with many older breeds of livestock it is not well suited to modern production methods. Because of their decreasing numbers, Tams were listed as “threatened” in the United States.
Now and then, Eleanor and her other livestock pig and goat neighbors at the park will be a special attraction for the school children and others who visit the Henricus Historical Park.