By Trey Braswell, 4th Generation Egg Farmer. Braswell Family Farms, Nashville, N.C.
One of my vivid childhood memories is on the South Lawn of the White House. It was a surprisingly warm spring day and I was pushing a brightly colored egg with a wooden spoon through meticulously manicured green grass.
It was exciting for our family and hundreds of others to participate in an American Easter tradition dating back to 1878 — the White House Easter Egg Roll! There was certainly a sense of connection and comradery. I remember also feeling proud; my father told me that all the eggs for the event had been donated by egg farmers. The eggs came from farms like ours in Nashville, N.C.
That was years ago, but I often find myself recalling that day on the White House lawn. And I still do so with pride, as I’m now the fourth generation on Braswell Family Farms, continuing our tradition of honoring relationships as we feed Americans across the East Coast and Mid-Atlantic.
The importance of relationships is close to my heart. Growing up, there really was no separation of “family” and “farm.” We considered employees as family (and still do). Some actually were family, of course, but everyone, related or not, was “Aunt” or “Uncle” to me. I suspect this was always the case, when my great-great-uncle J.M. and great-grandad E.G. purchased the water-powered grist mill that started our business. I believe a family atmosphere transcends job titles and responsibilities. And I believe the relationships we’ve forged over the years are what will keep our farm going for future generations. Ours is a people business. Our goal is to continue to provide the highest quality eggs every day and to make a positive impact on lives.
Someday when our young daughters are a bit older, my wife and I hope to take them to a White House Easter Egg Roll. For now, however, we are more than content to enjoy Easter in our North Carolina backyard at Braswell Family Farms. After all, the joy that comes from decorating or hunting for eggs further connects us as Americans, no matter if these take place on the White House lawn or lawns across the country.