Meet Middle Tennessee Farmer Charlie Hancock

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Middle Tennessee farmer Charlie Hancock

Photo by Michael D. Tedesco

About the Farmer

Farm Family: Charlie farms with his wife, Jennifer, and three daughters, Emily, Hilliary and Kayla

Crops & Livestock: Row crops, dark-fired tobacco, cattle and greenhouses

Farm Legacy: First generation

Farm Location: Bumpus Mills in Stewart County

Farm Bureau Membership: More than 38 years

How did you get involved with farming?

When I was 9 years old, I spent a weekend with my uncle who farmed. I loved it, and when I came home, I told my parents I wanted to be a farmer. So, I became involved in 4-H when I was young and then FFA when I reached high school. I also helped surrounding farmers, soaking up as much knowledge from them as possible. When I graduated high school, I went straight to farming. It was a tough time to start, but we made it. Now we’re fortunate to raise a variety of crops and cattle on the farm. We’ve come a long way.

What are some of the greatest lessons you’ve learned from farm life?

Don’t take anything for granted. Prepare for the worst, but be ready and open to the best of what farming offers. Unfortunately, being a farmer means we can have a great crop one week and then it can turn in the blink of an eye. We must be persistent and never give up.

See more: Meet East Tennessee Farmer Cathy Cambell

What has it meant to raise a family on the farm?

It has been a blessing beyond measure. I used to pray for a wife and children to raise here, and the Lord has gone above and beyond in answering that prayer. It has been an incredible opportunity to not only raise them on the farm, but to also raise them within the Farm Bureau family and to expose them to such a great group of people. Even though they aren’t working on the farm now, I know my girls carry the lessons they learned here with them. We couldn’t have dreamed of a better life.

Are you Farm Bureau proud?

Absolutely, I’m very much so Farm Bureau proud. I joined the Stewart County Farm Bureau board right out of high school. We were facing a drought and tough economic times, but I can remember going to a meeting, and I was asked to go on a trip with some members. I didn’t know much about the organization, but I decided to go. When I got back, the crops weren’t better, but Charlie was better. It was motivating to know I wasn’t alone in the struggles I was facing. Looking back, I can easily say my time in Farm Bureau has made a difference on my farm and my family. The people I’ve met have encouraged me to be a better farmer, father, husband and a better man. I thank God for that.

– Amy Beckham

See more: Meet West Tennessee Farmer Todd Littleton

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