On August 15, 1868, Abraham Fry purchased 80 acres in Castleton Township, Barry County, Michigan. He and his wife, Judith, built a house at what is now 5590 East State Road, Hastings, Michigan. In 1894, their daughter, Anna, married George Sherman Endsley. They purchased an adjacent 80 acres, where they raised seven sons.
Sherman and Anna’s middle son, Gordon E. Endsley, saw his first Charolais cattle at the Houston Livestock show in 1954. Impressed with the breed, Gordon and his son, Robert E. Endsley, brought the first Charolais cattle to Michigan in May of 1955. They purchased a bull and nine cows from Blanco Ranch, and a bull from Michaelis Ranch, both in Texas. Later purchases were made from Herman Conrad, also of Texas
It was the next year that Robert’s son, Gordon R. Endsley, helped them exhibit the first Charolais heifer born in Michigan, at the Barry County Fair. The family joined the International Charolais Association in 1955, and became charter member No. 131, of the American International Charolais Association in July of 1957. This herd of Charolais cattle is the one of the oldest herds east of the Mississippi River.
Today Gordon R. Endsley and his wife, Pat, live in the house that was started by Abraham and Judith Fry. They raised four children, Wade, Boyd, Eric, and Kara, whom owned and showed Charolais heifers and steers. Boyd is a partner in Endsley’s Charolais Farms with his Dad. Son Wade has returned to help on the farm.