New Hampshire’s Cow Appreciation Day

There is a day or a month devoted to almost any object, event or pastime that you can imagine.  One day each year in July is devoted to Cow Appreciation.  This year [in 2019] the celebrations are being held on July 9th.

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “Cow and calf.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1839.

The earliest incidence that I can find of Cow Appreciation Day was in June of 1992 [held during June’s National Dairy Month] when the Vermont State House hosted one.  “About 5,000 Vermont school children converged on the Statehouse lawn for activities that included drinking milk and singing about dairy farming.”  The following year (1993), also in June, the Billings Farm & Museum in Woodstock VT held its Ninth Annual Cow Appreciation Day & Hand-Milking Competition [on Sunday June 20].  This would seem to indicate that the event was being celebrated as early as 1984.

Within a few years the date of Cow Appreciation Day had been moved to July where it has continued for over two decades.  In New Hampshire the day is fairly low-key except for one interesting exception.  The fast food restaurant, Chick-fil-A, at Nashua New Hampshire’s Pheasant Lane Mall has “Dress Up Like A Cow” events each year to win a free meal.

Postcard: View of Mt. Adams and Madison from Pinkham Notch, White Mountains NH. Cows enjoying the view from the Glen House.

Five Ways You Can Celebrate Cow Appreciation Day in New Hampshire?
1. Drink or eat dairy products, i.e. milk, yogurt, cheese, etc.
2. Visit a dairy farm or learn more about how dairy farms work.
3. Some people suggest that eating meat other than beef (i.e. chicken or lamb) will make a cow smile.
4. Read about the history of cows in America and New Hampshire.
5. Support your local farm or agricultural clubs or societies that help kids learn about cows [for example, 4-H FFA (Future Farmers of America), or UNH Dairy Club.

***ADDITIONAL READING****

New Hampshire’s First Cattle: Captain Mason’s Yellow Cowes

New Hampshire Cow Stories: A Backward Cow Ride

New Hampshire Tidbit: Who Let the Shaker Cows Out of the Barn?

Cow Stories: Claremont New Hampshire’s American Mammoth Ox and Hon. Isaac Hubbard

Cow Stories: Bringing in the Cows, by Arthur Corning White

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