AUSTIN — Three Brown County families were recognized this month by the Texas Department of Agriculture’s Family Land Heritage Program.

The local families honored were Robert and Jo Damron of the Damron Ranch, 100 years; Buck Means and Allene Means of Means Farm, 100 years; and Jerome and Ruth Smith of Smith Ranch, 130 years.

They were among the owners of 126 farms and ranches from 76 counties recognized for maintaining their property in continuous agricultural production within the same family for 100 years or more. Since the Family Land Heritage Program began in 1974, the Texas Department of Agriculture has honored more than 4,200 farms and ranches from 232 Texas counties.

The June 8 ceremony held in the Senate Chamber of the Texas Capitol was the 32nd annual Family Land Heritage ceremony held since the program began, Staples said.

“The farm and ranch owners we are honoring have an incredible agricultural legacy to share, one that has spanned generations and seen dramatic changes over the last century,” Staples said. “These families have faced challenges head on and persevered to make Texas agriculture what it is today — an $85 billion economic engine.”

Other farms and ranches recognized in this area include the following:

Callahan County — Randy and Judy Foster Farm, 1904, Randy and Judy Foster.

Coleman County — Beck Ranch, 1898, Cheryl “Cherry” (Beck) Wells, Cynthia “Cindy” (Beck) Maedgen, Hal Zane Beck; Hudson and Bunting Ranch, 1905, Kay (Hudson) Bunting.

San Saba County — Lange Cook Ranch, 1906, Cliffa Gene and Ezra Cook; Hawkins Ranch, 1888, Imogene and Wallace F. Hawkins; and Robert H. Lewis Farm, 1899, Loveta F. and Robert H. Lewis.