Our Story

We grew up on a one hundred acre farm five miles outside of Laurel near Trap Pond. Our parents purchased the farm in 1949. The farm had two poultry houses, a barn with a small milking parlor, a corn crib, a smokehouse, a granary, a few acres of pasture and woods and a typical Sussex County farmhouse which had no indoor plumbing, no central heat, a leaky roof and drafty windows. Dad was overjoyed! It was a dream come true after years of planning and saving. Mom was somewhat skeptical but yet willing to give it a go. Together they built a successful farming operation. They were a team, working side by side weathering the challenges of farming - droughts, excessive precipitation, record low commodity prices, crop disease, livestock illness, equipment failures, hurricanes, etc. - but always keeping that optimistic farmer attitude that "next year will be a better year."

Our little corner of Sussex was a great place to grow up. We lived in a tight knit farming community with a reliance on each other to make it from one crop season to another, The community was like our extended family. All the families socialized together, went to church together, and supported each other during good times and bad.

Things changed in 1967 when Dad was told by doctors he could no longer farm. All he ever wanted to do was farm and now what would he do? About this time, the federal crop insurance program had been introduced in Delaware and they were looking for a Sussex County agent. Dad got the job, although his health was failing. This was something he knew he could do and stay involved in farming. Mom and Dad rented out their farmland, hired someone to help with the poultry houses, scaled back the livestock on the farm and went to work convincing farmers to enroll in a crop insurance program to help them reduce their farming risk. As always, Dad and Mom worked as a team selling crop insurance. Mom handled the administrative side and Dad was out and about talking to farmers.

In June 1972, our Dad passed away suddenly and our world changed. Mom was left with a farm to manage, two young daughters still at home, two daughters in college, and uncertainty about how she was going to move forward. Mom and Dad enjoyed the crop insurance business and had been extremely successful at promoting the program in Sussex. Mom wanted to continue with crop insurance but at the time there was only one other female agent in the country. The prospect of her keeping the agency was uncertain. However, the success Mom and Dad had achieved growing the agency caught the attention of the program administrators in Washington DC and they decided to let Mom continue with the agency. Here we are fifty years later! King Crop Insurance is doing business in all three Delaware counties plus Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.

Our story is not unlike so many other farm families in Sussex. You love the land and it becomes your passion. Farming gives that strong feeling of belonging in nature. The farmers land becomes an obligation of stewardship and maintenance for future generations. There is a joy of seeing a new crop emerge each year and to know you are part of the cycle and lifestyle, year after year. Farming is an occupation of simple rewards that can fulfill your heart and soul like no other. Everyone has a story to tell. Our goal is to collect and share those stories of our Sussex County farmers and farm families for future generations.