Harold and Delores Jurgena of Irving were honored at the Illinois State Fair this past week as a Centennial Farm Family.
Their farm on the edge of Irving has been in their family for over 100 years. John Sullivan, Illinois Director of Agriculture, presented a plaque to the family at a special ceremony and a Centennial sign has been erected at the farm.
The original farm was 60 acres but today, through growth and hard work, has expanded to 520 acres.
Jurgena's grandparents purchased the farm from Frank Norvel on Feb. 27, 1919. Prior to the sale they owned land in Fillmore Township. The move proved good for the family, as Jurgena's grandmother was able to be closer to people and town, which she loved.
Jurgena's mother originally went to Bost Hill School, but after the move was able to start school in Irving graduating as salutatorian of her high school class.
She taught school for three years, and married Harold's father George. Harold was born in the house which still stands on the farmstead today. Harold's father acquired complete rights to all the land in 1942.
The farm should stay in family hands. Harold's son Bill, who is fourth generation, and Bill's son Chris, the fifth generation of Jurgenas, plan to continue the family tradition.
Last year was the last year they did the farming themselves, but the fields are rented out for production now.