Coastal Tales: Rockwell Kent and His Mythic Farm

January 14, 2021

Located in Ausable Forks, NY, Asgaard Farm & Dairy is home to some unique Adirondack culture. I’m talking about the home and studio of the late Rockwell Kent (1882-1971), a man of many talents and the most-celebrated artist of New York’s Adirondack region.


An at times controversial figure -- an artist, architect, writer and activist -- who was called before the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) during the Cold War and who received the Lenin Peace Prize in 1967, Kent is remembered for both his critical and popular success. He was particularly known for his illustrations.

Though his works have been on exhibit at famous museums like the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum and even the Pushkin Museum in Moscow, it’s SUNY Plattsburgh’s Feinberg Library that is home to “the most complete and balanced” collection of Kent’s works in the U.S. The school’s collection includes a variety of paintings, prints, drawings, dinnerware, illustrated books, photographs, bookplates, archives and personal items.

An avid traveler inspired by the many landscapes he observed, Kent spent time in Alaska, Tierra del Fuego, Ireland and Greenland, among other places, but called the Adirondacks “home” during the later portion of his life.


Photo by: Bri and Tom Lyons from ON THE FARM: ASGAARD FARM & DAIRY

Dairy farming is the most common type of farming on the Adirondack Coast. In fact, here, you’ll find nearly 120 dairy farms which annually produce 380 million pounds of milk.

Asgaard is unique in that it provides dairy products from goat’s milk, as opposed to cow’s milk.

The 1,500-acre scenic farm and dairy in Ausable Forks, now owned and operated by the Butler family, was Kent’s home from the 1920s up until the 1970s and was named after the “heaven” of the Norse gods, according to mythology. Kent is also buried there, amid the backdrop of the Adirondack High Peaks.

In 2020, Asgaard Farm was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

The picturesque farm is visible in Kent’s notable works such as:

  • “Moonlight Sleigh Ride”
  • “Asgaard’s Meadows”
  • “Asgaard in January”
  • “Clover Fields”

Among his many talents, Kent also attended Columbia University to study architecture. He designed and built The Emerson House on the site of the farm, where the Emerson family who once ran the former jersey cow farm lived. Visitors can now book the renovated home for weekend or short-term stays.


Today, through online ordering via their official store, customers can conveniently purchase Asgaard Farm and Dairy cheese, beef, pork, goat, poultry and more for curbside pick-up -- right on the site of Kent’s farming legacy.

Photo by: Asgaard Farm and Dairy. Purchase their products through their online store!

In addition to their own meats and cheeses, Asgaard Farm & Dairy prides itself on local collaborations with other farms and businesses. On their shelves can be found treats from around the Adirondacks.

With a range of products and experiences, visitors are sure to get a taste of the farm life, just as Kent did. From artisanal cheese wheels and grass-fed meats to the historical significance and sites, there’s something for everyone to discover.


If you liked learning a few tid bits of Adirondack Coast History, check out more of our Coastal Tales:

Alina Walentowicz

Alina Walentowicz is "The Write Stuff", an award-winning writer and content creator ready to bring your web presence to the next level. A storyteller at heart, Alina combines a range of writing tools and collaborative experiences to help small businesses embrace their growth potential online. With a B.A. in English Writing Arts and Literature from SUNY Plattsburgh (2015) and 4+ years of experience in blogging and digital content creation, she provides writing, editing, and visual content services including blogs, web pages, social media posts, and more. When she's not clicking away at her keyboard, she's living life (and so should you!). Some of her favorite things to do on the Adirondack Coast include: catching a show at The Strand Theatre, overindulging in Wing Night at Monopole, and challenging herself just enough each summer on a few friendly hikes and paddles with pretty spectacular views. Know a good story that needs telling online? Hit her up at

Adirondack Coast Adventures

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