In short, Ploughshare and the classes we now offer grew largely out of the efforts of the Homestead Heritage community to lead a more sustainable and self-sufficient lifestyle.
The community that’s known today as Homestead Heritage began in the early 1970s as a small peace church in the lower east side of Manhattan, New York, in an area known as “Hell’s Kitchen”. Here, a small but ever-growing group of believers came together from many different ethnic and cultural backgrounds to worship and share their lives with one another. In the midst of an urban jungle, these believers learned to practice care and concern for one another and quite soon became a small community.
In the 1970s and 80s, our community began to look for a place, a soil, in which the seeds of the cooperative community life we were now experiencing would continue to grow and flourish. This set us on a journey that brought us eventually to central Texas. Along the way, we learned to farm with draft horses, grow gardens, orchards and vineyards, raise sheep, goats, poultry and other livestock; spin, knit, crochet, weave and sew, make soap, can produce from the garden and orchard and much more.