Our History

Spuds in our blood

HISTORICAL 2

Dick Wallace driving the spud digger, early 1960s

HISTORICAL 1

George and Dick's brother William “Bill” Wallace operating a grain binder, 1940s

Jack's Mom c. 1950

Grace Wallace on a new Farmall Super M tractor, 1955

Planting potatoes in the 30s

George Wallace riding on a spud planter, mid-1940s

Since 1903 the Wallace family has been growing potatoes in one of the world's finest potato growing regions - the Skagit Valley of Washington State.

Brothers George and Dick Wallace began farming together in the early 1950s. They began farming together on the same land farmed by their father Robert and uncles George and Tom. George, Tom and Robert (together with their parents and several brothers and sisters) had settled in Burlington after immigrating from Ireland in 1890. George and Dick were ambitious and hard working. They started with just 14 acres but gradually bought family land from siblings and uncles, and from other neighboring farms, all while each pursued a career outside of farming. Dick was employed at Texaco while George owned a local insurance agency and accounting firm. In the mid-1980s George and Dick were joined by Dick's son Tim and George's son Norm following college. In 1994 Jack returned to the farm.

 

Norm driving Case tractor.

Norm Wallace driving a 1927 J.I. Case Model 2545 cross-mount tractor which he restored in  1995. This tractor was bought new by Wallace Farms.

During the 1980s and 1990s the farm continued to grow and to advance with greater mechanization and automation. In 2000, a new packinghouse was added to create a modern production space that would streamline processes and facilitate food safety efforts. In 2002, a new cold storage was built at the same site together with a new office building.

The Wallace's potato farm in Ireland was located in a small village called "Ardtrasna" which was located near the Atlantic coast in  County Sligo.

Ireland farm

Ardtrasna, Ireland, home to the Wallace's original potato farm. The family farmed in Ardtrasna since before 1730.

The family had farmed in Ardtrasna since as early as 1730, and their homestead is still referred to as the "Wallace Farm" by the current farmer - a descendant man the family sold to in 1890. The move to America by George and Dick's grandparents James and Marion and their 11 children was driven by a desire for greater economic freedom and opportunity.

Dick, Tim, Jack and George Wallace