History

Woolever Corriedales began in 1960 when Larry, Max’s brother, registered his first lamb crop. Max started in 1963 and took over the whole flock in 1966.

The flock started with rams from Stull(IL), Walk(IL), Cruit(IL), Whitman(OH) and Dilliner(IL). Most of the foundation ewes were Dilliner, Walk, Frederick(IL), and Mohr(IL). In the late 60’s we purchased the Morris Yantis & Son(IL) brood ewes and one stud ram, Finney(IL) brood ewes, a Kin Bros.(OH) ram (son of the Senator), and a Bo-Mar (MI) ram. This core group was the start of Max’s 4-H and FFA project and one he kept records on to win the Illinois State FFA Sheep Award in 1967.

During the 70’s several different blood lines were added through the purchase of stud Rams, from Kin Bros., Milroy (OH), Calvi (CA), and Wheeler (OR). Our ewe flock was improved with the addition of ewes from Milroy , University of Nebraska, Rowe (NE), Haarman (Steve Griffin, CO blood lines) and Bo-Mar. Max started keeping the Gary Ricketts & Family Corriedales in 1972 and we have added several of their ewes to our flock, thus broadening our genetics.

Rams from University of Nebraska, Burns (IN), Spruce Shadows Farm (MN), and Rowe’s 1982 National Champion Ram, were added in the 80’s along with a ram we raised that was National Champion in 1981. The 90’s brought the addition of rams from Hathaway (NY), D. Martin (MI), Cook (OH), Morris(IL): “Step Ahead” and Kin Bros. Along with these rams we added a group of brood ewes from Hathaway and Triple D Sheep Farm (K&K, OH breeding). So far, since 2000, we have added rams from Emstrom(IL), Phillippi: “Big Lester” (MT) and Reister (WA) flocks. Throughout the years we have used several of our own rams with good success.

From the 60’s through the early 80’s Max was a regular at the summer county fairs, state fairs, and national shows. Since that time our efforts have been directed to selling at breed sales and at the farm. Some awards we have received include: Champion Ewe at the National Show/ Sale in 1971 and 1982; Max raised and showed the National Champion Ram at the American Royal and the ram was also Champion at the North American in 1982; Reserve Champion Ewe at the National Show/Sale in 1979, 1992, and 2003; and the Reserve Champion Ram at the 2005 National Show/Sale. Three National Show/ Sale judges have awarded our sheep with Best Fleece in 1987, ’91 and ’92. Woolever wethers have shown successfully at the Indiana State Fair for several years.

Max is an active member of the Illinois and American Corriedale Association and served as the National president in 1980-81. He was honored to receive the Guthrie Award in 1980.