ADCA History

In April, 1921, The American Kerry and Dexter Cattle Club published Volume 1 of their herd book. Although both Kerry cattle and Dexter cattle are published in this book, the two types of cattle are separated into two separate breeds with different breed descriptions for each. This is the first record of Dexter cattle registrations in the United States. In 1957, the name American Kerry and Dexter Club was changed to the American Dexter Cattle Association. This began the formal recognition of the ADCA as a national association dedicated to the preservation of Dexter cattle and tasked with keeping a record of purebred Dexter cattle pedigrees.

At a special meeting on April 28, 1960, in Decorah, Iowa, John Logsdon, after serving as President for 20 years, stepped down; and Otto C. Jensen (Tak-Sca-Du-Hav Herd) was elected President of the American Dexter Cattle Association. During Otto's six years as President, the regular annual shows at the Hamburg, New York Fair were held. In addition, a special exhibition of Dexters, including an ox team that toured the fairgrounds, was held in September 1960, in Allentown, at the Pennsylvania State Fair. Annual meetings were held at Hamburg and Cooperstown, New York.

At the annual meeting in Albany, New York, on June 11, 1966, Palmer Langdon (New Jersey Herd) was elected President. During his term, a bred Dexter cow was kept on display at the Central Park Zoo, in New York City, and rotated after her calf reached six months of age.

In 1978, Doris Crowe (Cranworth Herd), Ross Stone (Lockwood Herd), Larratt and Paddy Higgins (Trillium Herd), and Eric Lawlor (Aldebaran Herd) joined together to purchase four Dexter heifers from Beryl Rutherford's Woodmagic Herd in England and imported these animals into Canada. In 1978, Doris Crowe and some of her associates traveled to Pennsylvania to attend the American Dexter Cattle Association annual meeting. While there, Mrs. Crowe purchased a Dexter bull, Highland Perseus, and imported him into Canada.

In 1979, Doris Crowe imported six more Dexter heifers and a bull from Beryl Rutherford's Woodmagic Herd and these became the foundation of her Cranworth Herd. Many dun colored Dexters trace back to these imports from the Woodmagic Herd. The Cranworth Herd was dispersed in 1989. Descendents of Cranworth bulls and cows are found in many pedigrees of our Dexters today.

Frank McCabe (Alander Herd), a prominent New York State banker, was elected President at the annual meeting in Albany on October 5, 1968. During his term, a large meeting was hosted in Cooperstown for all the county agricultural agents of upstate New York.

At the November 10, 1974 annual meeting in Newburg, New York, William Carcaud (Melbourne Herd), an active Canadian breeder, became President, but he died two weeks later. Mark Davis (Colorado Herd) of Delaware succeeded him.

In 1977, with impetus from President Mark Davis, the American Dexter Cattle Association became a newly formed, non-profit Delaware corporation. Ten geographical regions were established, each represented by a member of the Board of Directors, elected for a term of three years by the members in good standing of the respective region.

ADCA Presidents after 1978 have beenV

  • 1979-1987 James J. (Jim) Johnson (o'Briar Hill Herd) of Ohio.
  • 1987 Dean Fleharty (Shome Herd) of Missouri
  • 1988-1989 Sandra Thomas (Thomas' Herd) of Oregon
  • 1990-1993 Philip Martz (Pretty Rolling Meadows, "P.R.M." Herd) of Pennsylvania
  • 1993-1995 Wes Patton (Glenn Land Herd) of California
  • 1995-1997 R.S. "Shep" Springer (Green Valley Herd) of Colorado and Missouri
  • 1997-1999 Jim Johnson of Ohio served again
  • 1999-2003 Patrick "Pat" Mitchell (Shamrock Herd) of Michigan
  • 2003-2004 Kathy Smith (K-Ro Herd) of New York
  • 2004-2006 Chris Ricard (Celestial Herd) of Oregon
  • 2006-2007 Pat Mitchell served again
  • 2007-2009 David Jones (Bar None Herd) of Texas
  • 2010-2011 Roberta Wieringa (Wieringa Dexter Farm) was elected.
  • 2012-2013 Pam Malcuit (Morning Star Ranch) of Texas
  • 2013-2016 Jim Woehl (High Pines) of South Dakota
  • 2016-2018 Greg Dickins (D2 Farms) of Missouri
  • 2018-2019 Lesa Reid (Kirkhaven Farm) of Tennessee 
  • 2019-2020 Jim Woehl (High Pines) of South Dakota
  • 2021 - Jeff Chambers (Silver Maple Dexters) of Nebraska
  • 2022 – Laaci Louderback (Rusty Ranch) of Washington State

Secretary, Treasurer, Registrar, and Webmaster positions have been:
Daisy Moore's daughter, Kay Moore Baker (Peerless Herd), became Secretary-Treasurer in September 1982 and served in that capacity until December 1986. Rosemary Fleharty (Shome Herd) became Acting Secretary-Treasurer-Registrar in January 1987, and then Secretary-Treasurer-Registrar in 1988. Rosemary served in that capacity until 2004.

In 2004, the American Dexter Cattle Association went through a reorganization, and Chuck Daggett (Daggett's Herd) of Minnesota became the Registrar and Webmaster, Bonnie Boudreau (R & B Herd) of Washington became the Secretary, and James Smith (Whistle Herd) of Missouri became the Treasurer. Bonnie Boudreau served as Secretary until June 2007, when Carol Ann Traynor (Hi-Country Herd) of Colorado became the Secretary. In 2012, Jill Delaney (Delaney Cattle Co.) became Registrar, Ray Delaney (Delaney Cattle Co.) the webmaster, and James Smith continued to serve as Treasurer. James Smith retired from the treasurer position in June, 2019.

National Dexter shows, in conjunction with an Annual General Meeting (AGM), have been held in these locations:

  • 1988 Oregon
  • 1989 Pennsylvania
  • 1990 Colorado
  • 1991 Texas
  • 1992 Wisconsin
  • 1993 Vermont
  • 1994 California
  • 1995 Michigan
  • 1996 Missouri
  • 1997 Alberta, Canada
  • 1998 North Carolina
  • 1999 Kansas
  • 2000 Missouri
  • 2001California
  • 2002 Oregon
  • 2003 Oklahoma
  • 2004 Pennsylvania
  • 2005 Missouri
  • 2006 Missouri
  • 2007 The ADCA celebrated its 50th Anniversary, Celebration" in Grand Junction, Colorado
  • 2008 Texas
  • 2009 Iowa
  • 2010 Tennessee
  • 2011 Oklahoma
  • 2012 Indiana
  • 2013 Missouri
  • 2014 Texas
  • 2015 Virginia
  • 2016 Kansas
  • 2017 Kansas
  • 2018 Kansas
  • 2019 Nebraska
  • 2020 - Virtual Show
  • 2021 - Ohio
  • 2022 - Ohio
  • 2023 - Utah
  • 2024 - Oklahoma
  • 2025 - Oklahoma

Dexter cattle have steadily increased in popularity in America through the years as indicated by the increasing number of registrations and members in the Association. In 1952 there were only 38 Owner/Breeders located in 18 different states. By year-end in 1982 there were a total of 183 Owner/Breeders located in 41 different states and two Canadian Provinces. By year-end in 2005 there were a total of 797 American Dexter Cattle Association members located in 45 different states and four Canadian Provinces. By the end of 2014, there were over 1400 ADCA members in 46 states (including Hawaii) and four Canadian Provinces. Today, the ADCA membership continues to stay above 1,000 with the population of American Dexter cattle continuing to prosper in the agricultural community.