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Ask Mark: Yoko Ono returns to the acquainted Delaware County | Columns

Keith Willcox of Roseboom obtained in contact just lately, interested by information that Yoko Ono is leaving New York Metropolis after 50 years and transferring to a rural upstate farm she purchased with husband John Lennon.

Keith’s curiosity was in regards to the prize Holsteins the well-known couple owned and their previous enterprise endeavors in Delaware County.

Information shops akin to Each day Mail and, amongst others, just lately reported how Yoko Ono, 90, is transferring to a farm close to Franklin.

Though well-known for the music they produced, the couple had different companies they invested in, together with farming.

As The Each day Star reported on Jan. 20, 1978, “Ex-Beatle John Lennon and his spouse, Yoko Ono, have gotten Delaware County dairy farmers.

“However they’re changing into dairy farmers on a bigger scale than most of their neighbors. They’ve purchased 1,400 to 1,500 acres in 4 parcels within the cities of Delhi, Franklin and Stamford.

“Their properties embody Argyle Farm, about 140 acres on the Delhi-South Kortright highway close to Rose’s Brook in Stamford, which went for $129,000. And greater than 500 acres behind the Ouleout Creek reservoir southwest of Franklin, which went for $49,000 based on tax stamps.”

George B. Morgan, of Walton, an agricultural funding specialist, who organized the gross sales, stated the couple additionally purchased an extra massive property adjoining to the Franklin land and greater than 600 acres on Betts Hill north of Delhi.

“They’ll use one or one other of the websites as a trip house and can function all three as long-term investments, Morgan stated. Each the Franklin and the Delhi farms are remoted on the finish of dead-end roads.

“Morgan and George Teichner of Delhi are companions in Dreamstreet Farms, which manages quite a few related farms in Delaware County for movie star buyers and others.

“Morgan stated he has introduced quite a few prime artists, photographers, fashions, and bankers into Delaware County as buyers in agricultural land.

“The companions concentrate on registered Holsteins, that are bred and bought by the farms, in addition to milk. The properties themselves are a long-term funding, although land values in Delaware County aren’t rising on the fee they had been within the early Seventies.

“The Lennons, by means of the Dreamstreet Farms employees, have assembled ‘a number of the prime animals of the breed,’ Morgan and his associates stated. Dreamstreet will now look after the herds.

“He described the Lennons as ‘good individuals,’ however not keen on ‘fanfare,’ however ‘very sharp enterprise individuals.’ They made a number of visits to the lands final fall, he stated. On one in all them final November, they stopped for lunch at a Delhi restaurant — and had been mobbed by photograph seekers.

“Rumors of the sale started circulating then.

“They’re environmentalists and ‘very a lot into the manufacturing of meals,’ Morgan added.”

Whereas the couple visited the realm from time to time, they lived on the Dakota Constructing on the Higher West Aspect of New York Metropolis, the place John Lennon was shot useless on Dec. 8, 1980.

Lennon had just lately launched a brand new album, “Double Fantasy,” and following the demise, report shops, together with these in Oneonta had brisk gross sales. Oneonta’s business and faculty radio stations performed John Lennon songs over the following few days.

Lennon’s demise had an impact on the Delaware County properties over the following few years. Each day Star readers of July 31, 1984 discovered, “Yoko Ono…has ceded two Delaware County farms valued at greater than $200,000 to the Spirit Basis, Inc., a charity established by her husband two years earlier than his demise to help abused youngsters, orphans and the aged.

“The transaction between Ms. Ono and the muse consists of 353 acres close to the Ouleout Reservoir northwest of the village of Franklin, a tract recognized regionally because the Bookhout Farm. The property was as soon as owned by U.S. Sen. Daniel P. Moynihan, who now lives in Pindars Corners.

“The second parcel of land ceded to the charity was the 244-acre Argyle Farm on the South Kortright-Delhi Highway close to Rose’s Brook within the City of Stamford.

In that very same story The Star added, “In July1980, one of many Holstein cows, owned collectively by the couple and an Albany legal professional, was bought at an public sale for $265,000, then a report worth for a cow of that breed.”

Oneonta Metropolis Historian Mark Simonson’s column seems twice weekly. On Saturdays, his column focuses on the realm earlier than 1950. His Wednesday columns tackle native historical past 1950 and later. When you have suggestions or concepts in regards to the column, write to him at The Each day Star, or e-mail him at His web site is His columns could be discovered at


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