High View Church Farm, the Cult where I grew up and Esalen

August 9, 2009

High View Church Farm, the Cult where I grew up and Esalen

 Okay, Esalen isn’t a cult, it isn’t even like a cult, so don’t get your panties in a bunch.  It’s just weird to me here, because I always talk about the bad parts of growing up at that cult, having my head stuck in a garbage pail, being starved, being beaten with sticks, ropes, fern sticks, (hurts more than it sounds, when you have a bundle of them, draws blood) having my ears boxed etc, it was waterboarding for children but what I forget is the great parts and I remember them when I come to Esalen.

 The organic food.  We raised all of our own food, and it was good.  We ate fresh chicken and pork, and we ate in communal dining halls and had these great meals of organic salads and steamed vegetables and organic farm roast chicken that was just great. 

 Esalen has a healthy organic environment.  You can come and go as you please.  It’s for people in a growth stage of their life, so the people you meet are amazing, passionate and curious.  High View was for people who had decided to stop their life.  They never changed their hair style, clothing style, religion or a single thought again.  They were just going to blindly follow the leader guy for the rest of their lives.  My mother and sister are still there.  They’ve been there for 43 years so I suppose that’s working out for them.

 Back to Esalen, the feeling you get here is that people are at some precipice in their life and the workshop leaders are giving them all these tools, like flying instructions and a para-sail or hang gliders (I asked my husband which it was, he said the word I’m searching for here is “suicide”)  and then they are going to jump off the cliff and start gliding.  Adventurous people, funny people, sexy people, take-off-your-clothes in the baths people.  I like these Esalen people. 

 Some of them get up early to meditate.  I like the concept of meditation and contemplation, but not the actual doing of it.  While I am running, I meditate. But sitting still?  And meditating?  That sounds like a lot of work.  Too much sitting down time for the Kate with nothing electronic to keep the hands busy.  I hardly have enough time now for press, work, family, run, write, sleep.  If I had to meditate too, the whole time I would be thinking about what I should be doing; that’s not the point. 

 Oh, and get this, I met this woman who does cranial work.  Yes, there is a whole field of people who work on your cranial area.  I like this idea.  Someone is teaching a workshop here on how to live your life more passionately.  If I live my life with any more passion, I won’t be able to sleep.  My life feels quite passionate enough.  I wake and breathe life passionately.  I sleep passionately.   I will wake passionately tomorrow and drive back to Los Angeles and fly to Ghost Ranch.


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  1. I lived at HVCF during 1968-1970 and attended the school there. I was incredibly unhappy and left after 2 years. I reflect on my time there often. I have yet to find anyone, after all these years, who had spent time there. I am very interested to come across your site.

    • What did you do after that? It’s a good place to get far away from…

      • After leaving in 1970, I returned to my family in South Carolina and resumed school.

        Yes, I remember Peter Priest. My memory of him was that he was kinda eccentric.

  2. Did you know Peter (paul) Priest? Or Stephen Sohmer? Or Jon Chatfield? Or Nola Bangs?

    • Nola Bangs was my mother who died in January. She did not talk a lot about her experience at The Farm but I recently was reading through some of her writings and she mentions what a wonderful influence Heloise was to her. She had a wonderfully rich life after leaving the Farm. It is very interesting to hear of the experiences there. I am very fortunate that she left the Farm after only a short time there.

  3. I was there from ’66 to ’73, then left and went home to PA, returned to Medical School the next year, graduated and trained as a Family Phsician, retired a few years ago.

    • My Mom, Dad, and grandmother lived at HVCF as well as with the group in Bermuda, and Eaglecrest and Pleasant Acres on Vancouver Island, BC. I am interested to read blogs that hint at abuse that went on?

      • I lived there from ’66 thru ’70. I have vivid memories of witnessing a beating shortly after arrival. Paul had done something that displeased George, and he assembled all the children and counsellors and made a demonstration for all of us to see. The message was “you will be next if you don’t obey”. There was a podium..and ropes…they told young Paul to drop his pants, which he did. He was then lifted up and bent over the podium….they proceeded to tie his legs down with the ropes, and Sarah pulled his outstreched arms above his head, holding him on the podium, while he was being beaten. George called it “six of the best”. I remember the stick. It was an old fashioned sawed off broom stick. Back in those days broom sticks were much thicker then they are today. “Six of the best” meant the one doing the beating was supposed to hit the child as hard as they could, which made it “the best”. After the second or third whack on his young body, he cried out, and his sister did too. George looked at her and told her if she did that again, she would be next. When the beating was over, they released the boy, untying the ropes, and he was allowed to pull his pants up. These beatings caused deep bruises. It made such an impression on me that I relive the emotions every time I think of this. Many of the children reverted back to bedwetting after arriving there, and they were beaten on a regular basis for this. They were humiliated in front of their peers by being made to wear diapers while going about their daily routine. There are many more stories of abuse….

      • Responding to Nella’s 1/4/11 post, I remember well the beatings that took place and I believe I know the Paul whom you referred to – he was a cutup. Luckily, I was never the recipient of “6-of-the-best” but witnessing those beatings instilled a lot of fear in us kids and, in my case, a resolve to get out of HVCFS. I remember the boy who had a bedwetting problem and that he was made to wear a diaper in front of all the students. I felt so sorry for him at the time and he has stuck in my mind all the years since. And after all the humiliation and scorn he endured, he is still at Jolly Farmer to this day. Amazing and sad.

    • Naomi, I’m Ken(ny) Roberts from Phippsburg, ME and was part of the “big boys” with Rob English, David Casey, George Darrow, Gordie Blythe and Rusty Casey. I was there with my sister Judy & younger brother Kevin from Oct 1967 into April 1968. We helped to build the school. My dad pulled us out without warning. It was a sad time for me, but my siblings were pleased. I returned to visit in 1975 to check things out, and try to discover what I had experienced. I saw George & Sarah, and a few others that I remebered. Seemed that most of the guys my age moved to Canada to avoid the draft.
      In 1982 I made contact with some of the guys that were delivering work in Mass as part of the “Jolly Farmer”.
      Was Charity Gale, Kate’s mom? I remember her well. And Christia(sp), Tom Ogdon, Tom Pollard, Phil Jacob and his sons& daughters, and of course Peter Priest, the author of that famous Apple song: “The Core” The core, the core, it’s what the worm goes for, the core is what the worm goes for, the core is what the worm goes for, the core, the core!
      There were lots of questions, and few direct answers, but I met the Lord Jesus there, but lost contact with Him as I pursued my own desires. But thankfully Jesus didn’t lose me, about ten years ago I discovered Christ again for the first time.
      I now live in Marlborough, MA and can be reached by Ken@conveyorguys.com I would love to hear from George Darrow. God Bless, Ken

      • hi this is mitch carr we never met but all the kids had great storis about you when i arrived and in fact a group of us with bob warner returned a box of your clothes to your house one evening only your mom and sister were there so i never met you …hope you survived better than some of these people.

  4. The people I remember well are Faith Hoffman, who was very kind to me. I became friends with her three children. I remember Christina (Levy?), Naomi Kalb, Carol Blythe, Tom Ogden, Ted and Charlotte Stevenson, Mrs. Elmore (I forget her first name) I was a classmate of her son, Jim. I only vaguely remember John Chatfield. Of course, I well remember George Eversfield and the woman who eventually became his young wife. I was never aware of any physical abuse that may have taken place there, but there were arguably a few who must have endured some degree of mental and emotional abuse. As a 13-year old, it was difficult to discern what distress any of the adults may have been enduring at the time. What do you know about the people who eventually left and what were the circumstances which caused the farm and the school to dissolve? I believe Mrs. Hoffman and her elder daughter went to Vancouver.

  5. …and I also remember Bob Warner (who was my counselor for a time) and his son, Bobby. Bobby went AWOL for several days once only to return and make a tearful plea for forgiveness in front of all his classmates. On another occasion, he slipped an “I love you” note to a girl at school for which is was severely reprimanded. I hope he made out alright in life.

  6. Is it true no one new can join the Jolly Farmers now? When did they stop taking members?

    • Not sure, I would think if you have $ to contribute and your life, your children, your spouse and the rest of your working minutes and are willing to do as you are told, you could still sign up.

  7. I noticed Ken mentioned Rob English. Do you remember the rest of the English family? Mr. and Mrs. English, Paul and Lyn? Do you know what became of any of them?

    • Paul changed his name to Daniel and married George’s daughter. They are now the gurus of the Farm. Lyn changed her name to Sarah and at a very young age, 20? became George’s concubine. She became his wife after 18 years as his mistress/concubine.

      She still lives at the Farm and assists in running the place as far as I know.


      • I love this reply. Never underestimate the power of denial. Of course, George and Sarah lived together. I cleaned their house and did their laundry and whenever I was in lockup, I spied on them with binoculars.

        But forgiveness is a good thing, so keep praying for me. I hope to be forgiven for my writing, my singing, the sex I enjoyed immensely before I got married and it’s all helped to make up for fifteen years of beatings and having my head stuck in a trash can. All good now though, the wine is flowing and you’re praying for me!

      • George and Sarah lived together in the Cottage behind Forbe’s House in Bermuda before they were married. It is rediculous to say they did not live together before they were married, however I don’t know if anyone ever actually saw them in the act. It is also naive to say that the Jolly Farmer is above that, because there has been plenty of premarital sex that happens there. Trust me, I know this for certain. It would do them a lot of good to lose the whole “holier than thou” attitude. Basically, the Jolly Farmer started out as a group of conservative Christians, as “Anonymous” says. However, it has morphed over the years into a profitable business that operates under the guise of Christianity, but in reality the almighty dollar has the last word.

      • Who ever you are, anonymous, it’s valiant of you to stick up for the Jolly Farmer. The fact is none of us can judge what anyone else did. I think it’s fair to say that we all have plenty to do just caring for how we conduct our lives. What happened in the past is the past, so move on.

      • I think that only God, George, and Sarah know the honest truth as to whether George and Sarah committed fornication. If there are others who actually saw something with their own eyes, I have not heard of it. On the other hand, I believe there is no question that they did indeed live together in the same trailer and tree house before they were married. This obviously gave the impression and appearance to many that they were indeed “together” before marriage. So whether or not they actually did sleep together, God does say to stay away from the appearance of evil. I would have to think that this would especially be the case if one is putting themselves in a position where others are looking up to you and following you in the your teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. I have heard some compare George to Paul and I don’t think that there is any time or place where Paul would have put himself in a questionable situation such as this especially if he was already married.
        As to the comment that this “is a total lie and totally goes against what the Jolly Farmer’s stand for,” I have to smile and feel sorry for you. Basically it sounds like you are saying that since the Jolly Farmer supposedely doesn’t stand for sin, there is then no sin at the commune. Of course we all know this can’t be as God clearly states that none are without sin and there is nothing new under the sun. I also know for a fact that fornication and many other sins did in fact happen on more than a one time basis at the Jolly Farmer. Not that this is shocking or any different than any other group of Christians or non-Christians around the world. The point I am trying to make here is that while you are dis-illusioned into thinking that such things can’t and don’t happen there, the rest of us have no problem seeing that the people at Jolly Farmer are no different from the entire rest of the human population. The Jolly Farmer is not special or set apart in any way from the rest of the Christian world.

      • Kate was your sister’s name shura……her and i had a few late night after hours encounters, both too young to know what we were doing

  8. I live in Woodstock, NB Canada, which is 10 minutes from the Jolly Farmers current compound. They have settled in there for over a decade now. It’s kind of a weird cult-like existence “over there”. And though I have visited their garden center for plants and flowers, we drive by it on a weekly basis, never really knowing what the real story is. My husband thought there was a book written by a young lady who “escaped”. I would love to know more about them, what resources do I have available?

    • I wrote a book called Lake of Fire but I have a new book called Wild Horses coming out on the subject. It is a cult started by George Eversfield in the early 60’s, they believe they are the only ones going to Heaven. Everyone else is evil. Since I left I am not allowed to speak to my mother or sister ever again. Lake of Fire is available on amazon. It’s weird to think that you live near them. They had to leave NH because of excessive child abuse. The U.S. only closes down cults for child abuse or stockpiling weapons.

      • Just bought Lake of Fire. Thanks for letting us know. I grew up in Unity, NH and attended a fundamentalist Baptist school in Claremont for a few years. While not completely immersed in a cult-like atmosphere, the oppression of young eager minds was something in common. We used to go to the Jolly Farmer for ice cream sometimes. My folks would tell me it was a “hippie commune,” but I gather they had no idea what was really going on there. It sounds like you are thriving despite your exposure to this cult. My days at the Baptist school marred me for life and I’m still trying to escape their memory.

    • I am responding to Echo6Lima’s comment about George and “Sarah”. All I can say is this was a bona fide cult–and was a blasphemy. The distorted image left about God has ruined/impacted too many lives. George was a deranged man…probably abused as a child…but that does NOT excuse any of the atrosites committed that he initiated/endorsed. I was “sent”/given away at age 4 and lived there until 1979-80. Terrifying memories…am in counseling for now. Have four children am trying to rear them normally..but don’t know normal when you have never been “allowed” to be yourself.”Amen”…dido dido dido… to everything she said…how true. the holier than thou attitude is what sickens me–and some of those who left are unwilling to admit and face up to the truth! I was a Clendenin.–my best friends were my peers whom I still love as brothers/sisters b/c we were taught to “forsake” your real “family” there!!

      • The purpose was to crush us I suppose, to crush the human spirit, but obvioulsy we are proof that the human spirit can survive.

      • I remember all this clearly, being tied down and beaten. When I tried to tell my father about it after I left, he couldn’t bear it, he never wanted to see me again. I think damaged people are hard to bear. Strangely, both my first and second husband were damaged people. They are my best friends.

  9. The Jolly Farmer moved its business to a remote part of Canada to get away from the corruption and evil they felt was ruining the U.S. It was done under the guise of cheaper land and labor in Canada, but they had been looking to move away from the States for years. They had made a number of investigative trips starting in the days of High View Church Farm, where they travelled to other countries including the Caribbean, Puerto Rico etc in search of their new utopia where they could built the new compound. The members of the community poured money into “investments” that were supposed to fund the movement out of the US, but most of the money disappeared. No one quite knows where and few if any members saw it returned. They continue to do business from their location in Canada, ironically doing most of their business with US customers. They also forbid their members from celebrating birthdays, Christmas, watching TV, listening to any music other than classical, or going to the movies. However, a huge amount of their business comes from the sale of Christmas decorations such as wreaths, poinsettias, etc. They continue to exist as a religious community that supports itself by its greenhouse operation. They are governed by the wife of the late founder, Mr. Eversfield. The group of people makes up a cult that strives to be self-sufficient, putting up fences around their community, keeping attack dogs, and maintaining security cameras and personel for protection. Any other questions about the place, I can answer them. I know the place inside and out since I left more recently, but would love to hear from others who used to live there. Why has no one ever taken legal action against the place? They continue their existence, thinking they can do whatever they want to those of us who have left with no consequences. This place needs to be exposed for what it is. More recently, they have tried to adopt Philipino children to come live as part of the families there, and this SHOULD NOT HAPPEN. I will write more as I can.

    • Have all of the group moved to Canada or are some of them still in NH? You mention Mr. Eversfield’s widow. Does she “govern” from NH or has she moved to Canada as well?

    • Wow, all this info is fascinating. How long ago did you leave the compound? I could NOT imagine growing up in that lifestyle. I recognize some names already posted in the comments, not by personal experience but through an indirect encounter. From what I understand you’re required to give a large portion of your income to the “Covenant” Church?? (I don’t remember the actual name..) What is this money used for? Operations?

      • Yes, they do take your money and they run your life and the money is used for the Lord’s work while you get to work in the Lord’s fields, from sunup to sundown.

  10. The entire cult is in New Brunswick, Canada. The former High View Church Farm on Rt 10 in E. Lempster, NH is a ghost town and has been for a little over 10 years. Holland House and the main bakery building are all still standing but vacant. Some of the other buildings have been bought or rented out. The Jolly Farmer no longer owns any of the properties. And yes, Sarah Eversfield runs the place from her home within the compound in Canada along with her brother Rob English. Its a brother-sister team running the place with most of upper management dominated by other Englishes and her relatives.

    • I recently revisited the farm and was surprised to find that Holland House is gone….it burned. Apparently there were two bodies found in the burned house…father and son, but they didn’t die from the fire….mystery unsolved.

    • Did they also close the sites in BC and Bermuda?

  11. I’m from the area in NB where the Jollys have established their compound. I knew there was something odd about the whole organization but didn’t really know a whole lot about them until an ‘outsider’ who worked there began to tell me some things she noticed to be out of the ordinary. She mentioned Sarah being the ‘leader’ and that you had to ask permission to do certain things. She also told me (whether it’s true or not, I’m unsure) that there are no doors in the houses within the compound. She also told me that couples have to ask Sarah permission before having sex. Are these things correct??!!

    • Yes, they can forbid you to have sex and that is painful for couples but they like you have a lot of children also, so there is that. You can’t wear makeup and you have to wear ugly clothes and no waxing or shaving. So basically your husband will need a blindfold at some point.

      • This is a lie! You had better not say things you do not know are true.

      • I lived there and I remember everything. Interesting that you think it’s all a lie. Are you allowed to blog there? God is watching you.

      • hello thetruthlives…..what part of this is a lie?

      • I lived there for nearly 30 years.

        Never was I forbidden to shave. No one controlled whether my husband and I could have sex. Abstinence before marriage was strictly observed; but there were no resrictions for married couples.

        I agree that there was a lot of mind control, and very strange fluctuations in the rules about clothing.

        Things changed a lot over the years, and the rules eased up a lot.

        I have not been in the cult for over a decade, so I can’t speak to how things are now.

      • The hatred and cruelty coming from that place in the name of “GOD” is unbelievable. It saddens me that a mother can neglect her children and allow them to be beaten, raped and abandoned. All in the name of the Lord. Sounds Godly to me.

      • If anyone is doing research and is interested in the early years of the group (1957-1962), I can help. In fact, I was one of the dozen or so people who were the very first occupants of High View Church Farm starting in the fall of 1959. I lived there for three years. Interesting times, those first few years. Loose, informal, charismatic, experimental, not regimented at all. George was the head but not treated like a deity then. And, while the rules were strict, at that time there were none of the abuses that I read about in this blog. It would make an interesting study for students of the sociology of religious groups.

  12. When did George Eversfield die?

    • Canada

    • He died in 2003.

  13. I disagree that abstinence before marriage was strictly observed. George and his SECRET-ary lived together and slept together. If you are naive enough to think they only cuddled, well, you should keep your head in the sand. They used condoms…witnesses say.
    As far as couples being monitored, I am not sure, but Sue English told us she and Daniel only had sex if the Lord told them to have another child.
    I noticed you called it a cult and that there was mind control.
    There is something about your screen name that makes me cringe when I think of all the atrocities committed at that place for the sake of the TRUTH.
    George posted a big sign at the Farmhouse….it read:



  14. Hi to you all I am Paul the son of Faith Hoffman and the youngest of three children…I have two older sisters..We all came to the farm sometime in 1966 and I left around fall of 1973…My real name is William and thats what I go by now..George Eversfield gave me the name I think of Paul after I started living in the school which means little one…Nella explains in a previous article how I had to endure a servere punishment at the hands of George Eversfield…Oh my oh my all these years gone by and I still feel the painful echoes of a distant past…It was around miday when they hurridly had us all to assemble out in the main central building the octogon shaped building of the school…I was one of the last to get there so I was sitting on the outskits of the crowd of children and counselors gathered about…George was standing up front of everyone with two counselors on his one side…I had no idea what the meeting was about initially until one of the counselors said my name and bam’ my heart started to race and my face felt all flushed as fear gripped me..It was sort of like they were holding some kind of court appearence and by that time I was literally shakin’ in my boots.. Then like somthing out of a Mideval horror story they made me bend over this huge wooden chest or podiun with my legs dangling off the floor…Then they tied my legs with rope so I couldn’t struggle…they had it so I had to reach my arms over my head so that lady would hold my hands secure even though I could’nt see her face when the beating commenced…I remember feeling like my very essence and dignity was being violated, something that I could never fully explain lator…And when he beat me it seemed like eternity between the blows..My oldest sister Patience bless her heart, we were so close as young children, let out a shrill cry as I cried out in anguished pain from the repeated blows…My minor offence innocent enough surely didn’t justify this terrifying outlandish punishement…I remember after the whipping was over I sat in a back room with my fists clenched in defiance and I kept telling myself I would get out of there some day no matter what…My sister Patience who back then was so innocent and kind young girl was beaten one time just because she gave a pencil that had a love romantic inscription on it to a boy she had feelings for or she said something romantic to him…I remember feeling in a rage watching some mucsle man stranger beat my poor sister to a pulp for such an innocent natural thing….Then there was that young boy that they made go around with diapers on in front of everyone because of his bedwetting problem..His name was Donny Chester…One cold winter day I looked out the window near the kitchen and they had him outside in subzero temperatures kneeling on the ground washing his own soiled pajamas in some kinda pot or container for more the an hour..He couldn’t help himself he had inherent problems and needed proffesional help…Some of the children just started running away. I think it was Brad Williamson that one day out of the blue swiped a pedal bike and quickly fled the area…As soon as they realized he was gone by taking a head count they sent out search parties to look for him, for twenty-four hours…They (those in charge) even took out some ceiling pannels to see if he was hiding there at the school and searched the surrounding woods several times..Around that same time George told all of children that ” there are no walls around this place”..yeah right…Back before they built the school we all stayed in what a lot of us chilren reffered to as “Tent City” a wide flat feild where huge Military type tents were set up,during the summer of 67′ while we was waiting for the school to to be built..During that summer was when a lot of new children came to the High View Church Farm, perhaps by way of some advertising promotions they ran to the outside world..It was that summer they held a early public corpral punishment.I think it was one of the Darrow brothers,James who recieved the punishment…Alls I remember was this took place outside inbetween the tents with a small crowd of no more then thirty-five or forty children and grownups and it was very bright sunny day..He was told to bend over a 55gallon empty oil drum laid on the ground while someone held his arms in front of him…His pants were soiled from playing earlier in the feild and everytime that strong man, could have been Issac, hit him with that sawed off broomstick a plume of dust arose from his pants and he never made so much as a wimper, the Darrow brothers were stong tough biuld..When we lator all lived in the school they had us run out in the snow in our bare feet before we would go to bed,they said it was to make us tougher…One night as myself and maybe ten other boys were coming back from running in the snow a couple of them for a joke locked me outside since I was trailing behind and my feet almost got frostbitten,just anather bazarre practice they had…We used to work long hours in the feilds carrying little jars of gasoline to put the potato beetles we picked off the potato plants…But on the bright side the food was good as Kate said a lot of fresh veggies, homemade food that was wholesome…When we lived one and all at the newly built school the cooks used to blend large curd cottage cheese in with the scrammbled eggs along with a side dish of vey thinly fried crispy scrapple which was my favorate…We used to stand in line early in the morning to recieve our daily cup of “Tiger’s Milk” which consisted of milk, brewers yeast powder and nutmeg…Not all times there was negative I have many fond memories such as one very cold winter night we all skated at either Dodge pond or Long pond where the ice had frozen several feet thick…someone with a tracter had ploughed the snow off the pond’s surface and a huge bonfire was built right in the middle of the pond..We all were served hot frothy spiced cider mmm and we skated under a moolit sky far into the night..We all used to go to a small mountain nearby in the summer where there was a meadow of wild blueberry bushes everywhre, we’d pick them put them in cans..There was a small wooden sign at the entrance of the meadow that read “Thou shalt not steal” apparently they though some one was stealing the berries or somthin’..The summers in New Hampshire are short but nice great for camping except for the small black fleas and moquitos…I didn’t write this to point out the bad things that happened there but rather to show that what started out as a fervrent religious dream went eventually terribly in the wrong direction of manifistation and purpose…I do remember a lot of you all like Brad ,Rob English Timothy Blythe,Ted and Joan Ogden annd their son Tom, Steve Simpson and his brother The Darrow brother,Naomi Kalb,Heather Debbie George and Sarah, Jacob and Peter Priest,Stephen Sohmer, who was incharge of me in the early days and many others..I remember Peter Priest well he was a little strange but had a brilliant mind..He used to go behind the blackboard while he was teaching us and make a bunch of coughing sounds befor expelling in his hankerchief..He once wrote a short story called “Victor Vibration his birth and Progragation” a short story of how sound waves travel from inside our ears..I saw him one time figure a division equation all in his head that was five numerals divided by three a complex mathematical equation to do mentally…He could have been a highly paid professor in a prestegeous University…When I left or was rather told to leave in late 72′ or 73′ I went to live with my dad for a short while…I had left the farm angry and right away I got out an old manual typewriter and some nice stationary and wrote a letter to the Governor of New Hampshire and the Attourney General outlineing many of the atrocities comitted at the farm including making young children working twelve forteen hours a day in violation of state and federal child labor laws..As a direct result several state officials went to the farm to investigate my allegations against the farm according to some people I later conferred with…You must understand I was still essentally resentful towards those who ran the place and how I was treated there..Today I have let bygone’s be bygone, but I’m happy I got out of there, it was too harsh and regimented that stiffled ones individual freedom and destiny..Yet on occasion I still shuudder at the though of what I and others went through there at the farm in East Lempster,New Hamshire…I now live in Virginia and have a nineteen year old daughter named Brandy Michelle…My Mom and oldest sister Patience live in Parksville British Columbia, Canada,I visitd there in July2005..And my other older sister Sandra “Storm” resides in Brooklyn NYC..I wish to thank Kate for posting this website site for all of us, very thoughtful of her I must say..We who have left the High View Church Farm should all try to stay in touch as we will probably never ever forget this rather somewhat strange dreamy place…For some of you a little known fact is this place was called “Highland Farm” back in the early sixties, alas that is an entirely different tale…It would be nice to hear from anyone who remembers me I didn’t originally want to give it out but here anyways is my contact e-mail:Loneknight747@msn.com. Hope you all take care and warmest regards….William 3/29/2011

    • William – Delighted to see your post here! – Brad

    • Hi William…(I’m proud of you for using your real name). You are a courageous man for speaking up. You are helping others have the courage to speak out.Thank you. My name is Angela Clendenin-King.You may not remember me. Was born there & lived there– 1970 to 79-80.I knew your sister, Patience who was quite a bit older than me. She was so sweet, gentle and soft spoken–always thought she was so pretty. I recall the pencil incident. To clarify your recollection of the barrel incident, George was the Darrow boy beaten. I know him well and have the utmost respect for him. He is a courageous, compassionate ER doctor and ironically is my husband’s cousin. He has three beautiful, fun loving girls and is a wonderful Dad. We see each other as often as our schedules allow. He has been such an inspiration for me on this journey to healing. As I was drinking my coffee early one morning (about 6 am) before going to work, something ocurred to me. OUR own military personnel are court martialed for using these abuses/methods on their ENEMIES.
      The physical, emotional,sexual, and mental abuse—and the use of Scripture to justify some of the abuses that many of us endured was INEXCUSABLE. NONE of this is OK!.Period! End of discussion!! The missing ingredient to this whole thing is LOVE. We would not be having this discussion if we had been given and shown true love. I am beginning to learn the true definition of love thanks to a dedicated, persistent counselor who is showing me the true meaning of love. On a positive note, I have been blessed with a compassionate, caring husband, and four beautiful, happy, normal children whom I love dearly and I am sure love me. and I would NEVER dream of giving away.

    • Donny was a “special needs” child. He needed the help of loving discipline, but not what they did to him. I don’t know how his mother, Martha endured it. When I was there, she was the cook at the school… Beverley 10/03/2011

      • Yes, Beverley….he was abused severely. I wonder how he made out in life. His mother, Martha is still with the group in Canada.

    • Quite surprised to see this write-up. It all brings back a whole lot of bad memories that I have tried to forget for a very long time.

      • yes this quite the blog. Tim …. this is Mitch Carr, , please contact me . or anyone else that remembers me like Paul, so many years to catch up on……have little fear we won’t be praying for each other.

      • Hello Tim…so happy to see your entry here. I hope all is well with you and your family. I have been wondering what happened to the Blythe family. If you’d like to contact me let me know. I’m on facebook as Joy Fussell. You remember the Allen family, right?

      • Tim, Good to see your name again. I was in the squad with your brother Gordon, and I think you knew my brother Kevin & sister Judy Roberts when we were there in the summer of 1967 through April of 1968. Life changing time for a bunch of young people. If you are open to it would enjoy an update. Ken Roberts, Marlborough, MA Ken@conveyorguys.com

      • Hi Tim – Great to see you here on the blog. We were in the same squad when I was at HVCFS back in 1968-70. I remember you had a really cool handknit sweater with a deer on it. I remember many, many other things, too, of course!. I’ve reconnected with several of our former classmates through this blog and it’s been great to reminisce and swap war stories with them. I hope and trust you are well. It would be great to hear from you. You can reach me at forecastmiami@aol.com.

    • William, now I’m crying… I remember you, I think, or maybe just your name.

      I spent my 1st summer away from my parents at the school in 1970 at the age of 4. I came back the next summer and finally left for good in 1983. You can read some of my experience/memories at this blog: http://raindropsinthedesert.blogspot.com/2008/11/in-beginning.html.

      I remember good times, but I remember lots of crap too. I even experience “six of the best” myself once, many years later. No ropes, no audience, but still not an experience I’d ever give to either of my children. I’m in Texas now. If you want to write, feel free to, but there is no obligation.

  15. i have been an employee at jolly farmer since 1996 i have seen no child abuse in any form the kids are as happy as my own. they participate in sports and other activities with local community children work at jobs off the community grounds there is reports of attack dogs NOT TRUE they have been burglarized and equipment was stolen i think that warrents watch dogs there are cameras that are for the usa border crossing called ctpat since 911 it creates easier border crossing all i have seen on this blog is negative remarks i have personally seen donations made to shelters food banks and less fortunate peaple by the jolly farmers they go to a local nursing home and sing to elderly peaple who cant get to church they have been a major asset to our community. Because they choose to live together and protect their children from the bad in the world does not make them a cult or bad peaple they are very social peaple they attend employee weddings go on vacations attend community events so how do they differ from the rest of us i think they are normal good living peaple and have enjoyed the work atmosphere at there community i think this blog is a place for former members and former employees to give jolly farmers a bad reputation ihope this post is left so it can be read by everyone who checks out this blog so people get a second opinion.

    • This piece is a little scary from the point of view of an English professor, but it is interesting.


    • @ PM employee – Your comments seems credible and reasonable to me given that 40 years have past since I had any association with the group. Times change. Perhaps the old guard of Eversfields and Englishes is finally yielding to the younger, more civic-minded members who recognize that forming good relationships with the locals is good for business.

    • Responding to April 10 comment by “Employee”…you have no idea. We… are not former members or employees. We… are the children who had no voice because we were too young and innocent to understand what was happening. We… are the children who learned to survive by whatever means we could. We…are the children who had no choice but to endure it. We have now grown up. It’s only after all these years….that we have the ability to communicate with each other on this blog and the internet. The stories on here are real life. Does the end justify the means? I don’t care how they “appear” now. Back then it looked good from the outside looking in too.

    • Employee, you say …”they participate in sports and other activities with local community children work at jobs off the community grounds”….. well I live and raised a family in the same community as Jolly Farmers and have all of my life…. I do not know of one instance of the Jolly Farmer children participating in sports or any other activities with local communities. NONE.
      Matter of fact I have never seen any children out and about in the community at all. Never.
      I have no opinion about the JF but wanted to share this fact.Maybe we should be asking more questions and learning more about our secret neighbors????

      • You should always wonder about people who don’t want anyone to know who they are and what they’re up to.

  16. Wow… What to say… It is very sad that you have had to endore and many others the abuse that you once did as a child, no child should ever go threw the things that you have. Working there the childeren do seem happy and worked with them for many years. I have also worked with your mother….. Now knowing what I know I can never look at her the same. I am not hear to bash anyone that still or does not work there or Bash about Jolly Famer It’s self, that not me. Just wanted to say That they are very nice people to me, Everyone does have a past Good Or Evil you can never tell these days. I am glad that you have not let your past Tear you down, Im sure it has made you a better peson cause of it.

    • What doesn’t kill you will make you stronger.

  17. How Come they all change there names when the came to canada?

    • The Farm has always been big on name changing. My mother’s name was Evadene and became Charity. There was a Peace, Faith, Hope, Patience, you get the idea.

      • …and there was Freedom, daughter of Dawn – remember them?

  18. In response to Sringwaters’ comment you’re right no child should have to go through all I and others endured at High View Church Farm especially at that sensetive, formidable age.And somtimes I remember it like it was yesterday,so I know it not just a bunch of fairytales in my mind..But I have for all intensive purposes put this all behind me,yes I will always remember the Farm but today is the first day of the rest of your life…I start out each day listening to upbeat music like Ryan Farish : “In this moment” and I try to focus on positive things,your thoughts you dwell on today eventually become your future reality..Yes it was hard to “let it all go” after leaving High View Church Farm and despite all the painful exsperience’s there of being belittled and downtrodden,I still feel no woerce for wear..I just kinda wish sometimes they could have handled things a little different, know what I mean,used a little more compassion,and not been so heavyhanded..

  19. I “left” the Jolly Farmer in ’97 having been there since I was 6. I remember well the stories related here having personally witnessed many of them. In later years the physical punishments were much reduced but the mental and spiritual pressure continued. Time and space do not permit me to share all we (my wife and children included) experienced before and after leaving. What I will say is this: very bad things happened there – as they do all over the world. And I had a choice – to kill myself with bitterness and hate or to let it go and let God deal with it. I chose and was blessed by God when He releived me of hate.

    In the words of Martin Luther King, “Let no man drag you low enough to hate him.” And as Jesus said, “Forgive or you will not be forgiven.”

    My email is shaunbest3030@yahoo.com. I will respond to questions as best as I can.

    • Hi Shaun, I remember you well. My neighbor, Jim, and I both got jobs in East Lempster in the mid 80’s. I worked doing some carpentry, and also helped set up new greenhouses. I remember building that sound proof office in the tractor trailer shop. The electrician there taught me some much needed electrical skills. I helped Isaac Pintor build the big walk in freezer for the pie company. I can still taste the Burgandy-Berry Pies. You were a young teenager and we got to work together on a number of projects. My wife and kids would come in and work in the greenhouses on the weekend.
      I wasn’t there all that long. They did us great favors such as bring equipment and gravel to dig our well. They even dug a ditch to run the plumbing to the house as well as a trench for my foundation of the addition we were planning on building. They donated this equipment, their time and materials and were a blessing to us.
      I drank to much, smoked cigarettes, as well as other things and the young folks seemed to like being around me and asking a lot of questions about these bad habits.. I have a feeling that I wasn’t a good influence on the teens there as one day, Daniel took me into his office and told me that they have decided that I wasn’t earning my wages, but wanted me to work out the week at a lower hourly rate. I told him no, see you all later and went to leave. then he changed his mind to giving me a raise to stay because they really needed me to set up those green houses that week. I think I worked a couple more days and didn’t go back, except to get my paycheck.
      I know we left some kind of impression on someone as a friend told me that a young couple that had left there a few years later, named their child Heidi Alison. those were the names of my 2 daughters. 🙂
      I never saw any wrong doing and it seemed as though the children, as well as adults were pretty content to be there.
      Hey, didn’t you come up on the farm and help re-shingle Georges barn roof? That was some tall staging and I helped on the lower part, but couldn’t bring myself to step up onto the top part of that gambrell roof. man, did I shake and felt pretty ill, when I attemped to take the step up.
      By the way, I am a Christian, born again, and haven’t smoked or drank for years. The Lord set me free of those things.

  20. (Fitting)
    By The Arcade Fire

    The king’s taken back the throne
    The useless seed is sown
    When they say they’re cutting off the phone
    I’ll tell ’em you’re not home

    No place to hide
    You were fighting as a soldier on their side
    You’re still a soldier in your mind
    Though nothing’s on the line

    You say it’s money that we need
    As if we’re only mouths to feed
    I know no matter what you say
    There are some debts you’ll never pay

    Working for the church
    While your family dies
    You take what they give you
    And you keep it inside
    Every spark of friendship and love
    Will die without a home
    Hear the soldier groan, “We’ll go at it alone”

    I can taste the fear
    Gonna lift me up and take me out of here
    Don’t wanna fight, don’t wanna die
    Just wanna hear you cry

    Who’s gonna throw the very first stone?
    Oh! Who’s gonna reset the bone?
    Walking with your head in a sling
    Wanna hear the soldier sing

    Working for the Church
    While my family dies
    Your little baby sister’s
    Gonna lose her mind
    Every spark of friendship and love
    Will die without a home
    Hear the soldier groan, “We’ll go at it alone”

    I can taste your fear
    It’s gonna lift you up and take you out of here
    And the bone shall never heal
    I care not if you kneel

    We can’t find you now
    But they’re gonna get their money back somehow
    And when you finally disappear
    We’ll just say that you were never here

    Been working for the church
    While your life falls apart
    Singing hallelujah with the fear in your heart
    Every spark of friendship and love
    Will die without a home
    Hear the soldier groan, “We’ll go at it alone”
    Hear the soldier groan, “We’ll go at it alone”

  21. Responding to the “employee”s comment posted on April 10. What you see today at the Jolly Farmer doesn’t reflect what it was like back in the days when we were there. The problem is that these people have never acknowledged that they ever did anything destructive to those of us who chose to “go out into the world”, or those who were excommunicated. Do you think everyone on this blog is posting things which aren’t true?
    They have always been good at putting on a good face to the outside world. From what you are saying, they are more skilled now than they ever were.
    If they have truly mended their ways, and are living the life Jesus would want them to live, why haven’t they seen the evil they spread and acknowledged us, and asked for forgiveness.
    Many ex-cult members have tried to call their attention to these issues, but they continue to justify what they did in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
    George Eversfield reportedly died in 2003, but he left a legacy which defiles Christianity. There are still many people living in the cult today who took part in child abuse at George’s direction,and still practice mind control with religion.
    Thanks to Kate Gale for starting this blog. She was one of those who was badly abused, and turned out to fend for herself. She had no place to go, and I weep for her, along with all the others. These stories read like a Stephen King novel, but the problem is that they are not novels….they are true.

  22. Yes, George Eversfield placed great importance on the meaning of names.

    Isn’t it ironic….if you google “jolly farmer”, the origin of that name is quite revealing. Today it is a pub in England. Before that the name can be traced back to a farmer who was a “highway man” that stole gold from his victims. The pub is now located along the road where he would lay in wait for travelers.
    I found this to be quite interesting.

    • Actually, the name was bought from a flour mill in Texas – no connection to the pub in England…

  23. I remember Faith Hoffman, she was the only one that ever hugged me when I cried. I remember Freedom, Dawn, Peace and Patience. I can only say Thank God for where I am now! It was an experience one never forgets nor should have gone through, but it was instrumental in making me who I am today, whether good, bad or indifferent. I look back on it and remember that God was there even then, forming me into something greater that could look back on those disillusioned people and feel compassion for thinking they are better then the rest of the world. We are in this together, like it or not, we are all connected to the universe, so it is really time to wake up and realize no one is better or worse for how they live.

  24. I’ve always been interested in following up with people who lived at The Farm. I actually live near by in NH. It’s amazing to drive past there and it’s all abandoned and falling down. The memories are few, ( I’ve blocked them out, I suppose) but the ones I do have are for the most part negative. I am glad to say that finally, I have come to a time in my life that it no longer matters. What matters to me now is who is in my life and what our future holds. I’m sure the HVCF helped shape me, but then again everything in life does. Hopefully it made me a stronger person with the compassion that one did not receive there. I’ll be following this blog and hope to maybe have some contact with other “survivors”.

  25. Hi all — just stumbled across this blog, and read with great interest (and some trepidation) through all the High View-related blog entries and their comments last night. Wild stuff. I was born into this community and was kicked out around age 8. (I’m now 39, a lawyer, and live in the DC area.) My parents and 4 brothers were all there, and then we all left. Practically nothing I read here was surprising to me. I have nothing kind or complimentary to say about the community, and have worked for years to overcome the emotional scars it inflicted. I am now a dedicated Christian – in spite of and not because of my experiences in Lempster and British Columbia as a child – and that is because I experienced God’s love and — for the first time — grace, elsewhere. I’ve long wondered why such a place that wreaked such havoc on so many was never challenged by law enforcement, and am pleased to see that perhaps it was, if unsuccessfully (if indeed it was complaints and investigations that drove the group from NH to Canada, I call this a victory for NH and a loss for Canada). I’ve also thought it was strange that there is basically nothing about this place online. I’m grateful to have found this blog, and wanted to say thanks to Kate and hi to others.

    I have many memories from my first 8 years of life … have tried to put many of those out of my mind, but more recently to remember more of them and put them in context. In reality, I probably remember more than I want to. I recently was in Lempster and drove around the Route 10 area, then the middle area with the farm house, pond, etc … and finally was disappointed to be walled off by ‘no trespassing’ signs from seeing where (I understand much of this is gone now) the octagon, 30′ by 40′, stratisban, catfish/snapping turtle pond, and orchards/ sledding hill to Mr. Whipple’s house … were. What was there is of course replaced by the wind farm. How I would love to read the definitive unbiased history of this place. I did order a used copy of Kate’s book ‘Lake of Fire’ from Amazon and am interested to read that version of someone’s memories.

    I’m certainly happy to say hi or commiserate with anyone, though am focused on the present and the future, not on the past. Email is pantzer@gmail.com. God bless you all. Dan

  26. I am sitting in a window overlooking Grand Lake NB and presently watching over 30 Jolly Farmers enjoying a weekend here at the lake. All the kids are out on the lake in canoes, sailboats, power boats etc. One of the families have rented the cottage next to mine and they are very friendly and often bring us bread and cider as presents. The kids are in in excellent physical condition and very polite and outgoing. I think the organization must have changed alot since High View days.

    • Your post is interesting, Pippen, because this has been going on for years. What you see is exactly what they want you to see. They’ve been putting on this front for years… the beautiful place, the hardworking almost Amish-like Christian people, the kids who are beautiful, well-behaved little cherubs, the profitable well-managed family run business, the perfect model of life the way life should be. What you don’t see is what happens beyond the public eye, the manipulation, deceipt, and mind games. I worked in the greenhouse as a young kid for little or no pay and they would hide us every time inspectors came through because they knew it was illegal and this is just one tiny example.

      They want you to think they are different, that they don’t watch violent movies and TV shows, that they don’t listen to “worldly” music, that they don’t use bad language, that they wait until marriage to have sex, that they live in perfect unison in a close community.

      What you don’t see is the strife that is tearing the community apart as members leave at an alarming rate, the disagreements since Mr. Eversfield passed away, the secret late-night parties where the kids grind on each other and listen to music and trade movies (most of the parents and adults don’t even know about this), the sex among minors in the community and the premarital sex. This is not ancient history either, this is happening now.

      What you don’t see is that the place is run by an eccentric woman who is losing her grip on the community and becoming more and more irrational since her husband passed away. I think she sees the writing on the wall and knows the community has run its course. It won’t last much longer and its members know it. Many are starting to bail out while they can. There is a small core of people within the community trying desperately to hold it together, but the internal division is destroying it.

      • What is fascinating is how none of the physical abuse was present during the earliest years. I lived on the Farm (“Highland Farm” at that time, as William has noted) with the very first small group of about a dozen, starting in 1959 and leaving in 1962. I was never physically punished in any way, not even a mild spanking. George was tough but loving (or at least so it seemed to me at the age of 10 to 13). I went away rejecting the religious beliefs entirely but with the warmest of feelings for George, the Englishes, the Jacobs, and all the others there. How odd to read what happened as time went by. Kate has done a great job with her novel; now someone should write a sociological history of the movement.

      • You are right about Native Americans.

      • @Who….I heard that Rob English is no longer with the group. I believe you’re right about them bailing out.

      • Hi Chris…how interesting to hear from someone who was there back in those days. How many people were there at that time? Was Shannon, George’s wife still there?

      • Who, from my experiences of 11 years in NH with this cult, I would have to say that you have nailed this.

  27. i live very near the jolly farmers, and i know them well, i am trully shocked, and i really would like to speak to kate personally……..

  28. Hi Kate and all,

    This is Paul Pantzer. Not sure if you would remember me. I am the third of Dave and Liz Pantzer’s five sons.

    It has been quite the experience ercently, looking back at this chapter of my life, through the blog. I lived at the boarding school at High View from age 7 to 13 (1977 to 1983), until apparently I was “asked” to go live with my parents, who had been “asked” to leave the community a couple years earlier.

    I probably have several books’ worth of stuff I could say but will start by saying my heart doesn’t stop breaking for all of the lives that were harmed at High View… mainly the children who couldn’t make their own independent decisions and protect themselves.

    While I count myself among those harmed, I also think that experience was used in my life for good, in some ways.

    If anyone from this chapter of life wants to reach me, I can be reached at ppantzer@gmail.com.


    • I do remember the Pantzer family. The Farm was set up, I believe with good intentions, but it destroyed many lives. Not mine. Not yours.
      When I left there, I was a non-person. That was a long time ago. Some of us fly eventually.

    • Hello Paul,

      I lived at High View Church Farm from 1971 to 1974. I was 22-25. It was long enough to be profoundly impacted by the dear believers there, your parents among them, and by George and Sarah and the obscene power structure they built and wielded.

      I was asked to leave, sent home, excommunicated. That was almost 40 years ago. It took me several years to put the experience behind me. I met a wonderful Christian man and we married (33 years in December) and raised 5 delightful children.

      Over the years I have wondered what happened to so many, to Dave and Liz, to Ted and Charlotte Simonson, to Dawn and Freedom, Charity, Martha and Donnie, Kay Talcott, Faith, Patience, many more whose names I forget, and even George himself.

      I just found this blog tonight, and I must say it is filling a void, hearing the experiences, the stories, finding out what happened to people. I am sorry for the injury, the grief, the emotional and spiritual suffering so many experienced. It is both validation and commiseration, and in a strange way, releasing.

      I would not want to be George Eversfield, rendering account to the Lord Jesus for the harm he did to so many, especially the children, and the young people.

      I know at one point Dave and Liz had a burden to go to the Middle East, and little David was learning to answer to “Da-oud”. Possibly you and your younger brothers were not born yet. Then, the plan “went away” and they stayed. I remember Liz taught us all Red Cross first aid classes. I guess to prepare us for emigration.

      I suppose your folks have gone to be with the Lord by now, but they were dear and good to me, and I wish I could have known them after I left the farm. Let me know if I can still greet them personally, erleyedit@gmail.com.

      One of the things people don’t mention is the loss of the positive relationships they did have. When you are tossed out, no one talks to you again, or is allowed to talk to you again. Even if you write letters, no one answers.

      This blog is so wonderful for giving people a chance to reconnect and talk about it.

      Beverley Wyatt Henderson

      • Hi Beverly.

        I’m sorry I missed your post… I don’t check Kate’s blog too often. Thank you for writing. My dad (Dave Pantzer) died in 1987, and my mom (Liz Pantzer) is very much alive and kicking!… (Right now she is living with my younger brother’s family in Maryland). If you would like to connect with her I would be happy to pass on her email address. I live near Boston (Marblehead MA).

        I am glad to hear that life took a better turn for you. God is good and I guess made us to be pretty resilient in the long run. I was asked to leave in 1983 when I was 13. I won’t go into the particulars, but that minute of my life is a particular minute I will never, ever forget. I had been living at the boarding school at High View since I was 7. You’re right about the loss of personal relationships. I am finding that almost 30 years after leaving, I’ve connected to several folks through Facebook (http://facebook.com/ppantzer) which has been really interesting.

        Merry Christmas,


  29. Yes, the locations in Bermuda and BC are long gone. At least for now, they seem to have found their Paradise way out in the hillbilly backcountry of New Brunswick, Canada. At least they cannot be touched by the evils of the world way out there or so they believe? The ironic thing is that the evil they so fear didn’t come in from the outside, it grew from the inside. With the introduction of smart phones, computers, and all the other technology that connects the young people to the internet, they have access to all the things they have despised about the rest of the world. The young people are now getting all the porn, music, and movies that they’ve been missing. And Sarah Eversfield and the parents all think their little cherubs are so much more divin than the rest of the world.

  30. (This is a reply to Joy Allen Fussell’s message of Jan 3, 2012.) When it began, in the fall of 1959, in fact George did not live on the Farm. He and several other families lived at another location, called “Thirty Acres”. But of course everyone got together frequently. There were only about 10 or 12 people during the first year at the Farm itself. The four kids at both places (including me) went to the local public school. The Farm did not have a school at that time. I decided to write a newsletter with all the goings-on at the Farm from Dec. 1960 to Dec. 1961. I still have a copy. So I have lots of details. In Dec. 1960, there were 11 people at the Farm itself, including George, Shannah, and Sue. I also noted (I was age 12 at the time) that there were 12 Belted-Galloway cattle, 27 ducks, and 38 chickens. Re your question about Shannah: I liked her very much. She was warm and loving and had a good sense of humor. She was sickly though, and for many months she spent a lot of time in bed. Happy to provide more details to anyone interested in the very early history.

    • I can’t resist adding something that those of you who knew Sarah Eversfield only as the wife of the Leader might find amusing. For one year (1958 or so) my mother and I went to stay with the Englishes (we both were in Pennsylvania) every other weekend. Lyn English (as she was then called) was my great buddy. I was 9 and she was 13. I had a wicked crush on her. A song that had just come out, “Born Too Late”, became *my* song. She cut my hair from time to time. I can still remember, with poignancy, the feel of her breath on my neck when she would lean close to me. Not the image that most of you have of Sarah, I assume!

      • That is amusing Chris…..she was a lovely blond. I can see how you would be infatuated with her. George picked the cream of the crop to be his secretary/wife. I never really heard what his marital status was after Shannah left. I believe he stayed married to her for many years. Do you remember the names of the original 12 or so?

      • Reply to Joy about who the original inhabitants of the main farm were in the fall of 1959: the Withams (Wes, Flossy, Linda and Steve), some rough woodsman type whose name I forgot and my mother (later to be Ruth Jacob) and me. Wow. I think that was it for the very first year. Very small group.

    • I remember the early years I lived in town played with the kids Mrs.Witham was the cook remember Joan Horn an her parents maybe went to school with you was in class with Robert English David Cloisey not sure if thats spelt right Renda Cheshire Kenny Rotundra .Often think of them all.I get to see Gordy an Peter Blyth
      hope you all are doing well.


  31. So how do you people know that the Jolly Farmer business in New Brunswick, Canada is in fact this cult?

    • Because I lived at the Jolly Farmer for 15 years and by even the loosest definition, they are a cult.

    • We still have family there

  32. I’m not doubting that the cult in New Hampshire existed, what I meant was how do people know the Jolly Farmer in Canada is in fact the same thing and not just an unrelated business that happens to have the same name?

    • If you mean, has the organization that, several years ago, moved from NH to Canada, changed its ways in any particular aspect — that would be a reasonable question (that I personally couldn’t answer, though others could provide insight).

      But if, as it appears, you are suggesting that there’s no historical relationship between the JF that existed and the current one in Canada, just two similar names in the yellow pages — that’s absurd. People know because their friends, former friends, or family members moved there from NH. Or because they moved there themselves.

      Dan Pantzer

    • I can put any doubts you have about this to rest. I grew up as part of the Jolly Farmer Community in East Lempster, New Hampshire from a very young age. I then moved to Canada with the rest of the group in the late 90’s as they were establishing the new location in North Hampton, New Brunswick. The entire group is in New Brunswick, Canada and the location in East Lempster was completely vacated. Trust me, the cult is made up of all the same people, methods, and leadership as it was before, other than that the leader passed away and his wife took over. The only real change was the location.

  33. I wasn’t suggesting they were related. I was legitimately curious if they were or not, because according to the link I’ll put at the end of this post, it seems like they’ve been here since 1967 and I was going to order from them. Guess I won’t now, though.


  34. ^ Sorry, meant to say “I wasn’t suggesting they WEREN’T related”.

    • Moman, that makes sense. “Since 1967” is probably accurate; the website doesn’t say it’s been in Canada since ’67. Some of the earlier NH residents could probably verify the ’67 timeframe.

      On the topic the move, here’s a short excerpt from a published decision of the NH Board of Tax and Land Appeals, Alabama Farmers Cooperative, Inc. v. Town of Lempster:

      “The Town argued the assessment was proper because:
      (1) the sale of the Property is not indicative of market value because it was part of the lengthy liquidation of real estate owned by the High View Church Farm (d/b/a “Jolly Farmer”) after its members moved to Canada and because it was part of a purchase and immediate partial resale by an individual who had purchased real estate from High View Church Farm on both sides of Rte 10 and then sold the east side to the Taxpayer for nearly the total purchase price.”

      • Interesting. Yeah…I don’t think I’ll be ordering from them, heh. Thanks for the info.

  35. Wow, what a blast from the past, so to speak. I was brought to High View when I was 5 years old, in 1971 from Canada knowing only French as my language. I adapted fast to English. My older brother Denis is married to Patience. My name is Richard. All 10 of us siblings were in the group at one time or another and our parents Syl and Gertrude. Our family name is Cousineau but I changed my last name to Kennedy and immigrated to the US. So many names mentioned are familiar but it’s been so long ago. I spent time as a teenager living at PA with Daniel and Sue Lovejoy (former English) and their family. I officially got out of the group when I was 16. I was living at Eagle’s Crest, renting a room from Denis and Patience.

    I now reside in Oklahoma. I am a state employee as a correctional officer and hostage/crisis negotiator.

    I remember a lot more after reading so many of you alls posts. One thing I will never forget is getting “6 of the best” with that same cut off broom stick some spoke of and my bruising. I still have 1 sister in the group. I forget most of the names of people that were around my age. I can remember Sarah Best. We used to work in the laundry together and became close friends for a while. There was a Kalanoski (not sure of the correct spelling) that was about my age. We hung out one summer at the shop across from the Jolly Farmer. I was friends with David Lovejoy, until I left.

    As for George Eversfield, it is my understanding he died a long painful death from cancer.

    I want to thank everyone who has posted to this blog. It’s jogging a lot from the past.
    I would welcome further discussions and via email. My email address is Richard@tuffmail.com.

    May we all find peace and happiness in our lives. God bless you all…

    • Oh Richard! John Pantzer here. You’re just around the corner from me now. I’m in Dallas, well, Richardson actually. God! I’m glad you’re out of there, and so sorry to hear your sister is not. Is that Christine? (At 10, I was totally in love with her for a while.) johnskytalker@att.net.

  36. How many people live in the cult within New Bruniswick, Canada? and is it true they have weapons? There are a lot of rumors going around the small town in Woodstock.

    • They are supposed to have 250 or so people. They never used to stockpile weapons. Cults in the U.S. can be closed down for stockpiling weapons and child abuse. The Jolly Farmer was investigated for the latter several times because they beat children and so they moved to Canada.

    • There was far less than 250 people living in the NB community. I moved from New Hampshire with the community when they pulled roots and moved up there. I was 9 years old. I lived in the NB one until the year 2000. I don’t know an exact number for the individuals within the community but it was way less than they would have you believe.

      They never truly stock piled weapons to my knowledge but they did promote weapons and arming yourselves. George preached for years that basically there would be an “end of the world” scenario. A judgement day by biblical standards. In that time, he would have everyone in the community believe that no “outsiders” would be taken to heaven, only Jolly Farmers. His angle on this was that they would have to protect the community as others would try to get in.

      They build a large fence around the entire community and developed a “community watch”. They bought several large guard dog breeds and were training them as patrol dogs.

      There were cameras that, as a kid, me and my friend would sneak around the property and find. They had them stashed in quite a few trees around the area (mostly close to access roads)

      There was also a massive amount of provisions before “Y2K” George believe that the year 2000 was going to basically be Judgement Day and that all the “sinners” would be fighting to try to get into the community to access the thousands of gallons of gas and diesel fuel as well as the massive warehouse full of food and provisions.

      These people are deranged but in my opinion are not a threat. I left shortly before George died. It’s my understanding that since then the community had started to come apart (internet and TV allowed etc etc) however I just read on here that they opened an orphanage and are now bringing civilians from other countries into the community and allowing them to marry into the community. This was written as a good thing. This is a VERY BAD thing! This is the process starting all over again but Sarah will run the show. To many people were related in that community when I left. There couldn’t have been much more reproduction without bringing in new blood lines. Those people coming over think they are coming to America in general, they are never going to truly see what the country is. They may be adults but when put in a new situation you are very impressionable. Whatever they are told within the community they will believe. That was essentially what happened at HVCF, many kids, including my parents were taken in at very very young ages and raised under stict guidelines leaving them very brainwashed. The community will be replenished with impressionable minds and will close it’s doors again before long. Make no mistake, it is most definitely a cult.

  37. Joy

    This is Angela C. Don’t know if you remember me. I was sent to HV at age 4… my goal each day was survival-literally. Ran across passport to BC in 1975. Real protective parents sending a 5 year old 3000 mi,. from home. Would love to connect. You can e-mail me @ pianist2@hotmail.com.

  38. Has there ever been any legal action taken in connection with the horrific things that happened at this place? As a Canadian (with a close friend who survived things no child should be subjected to) it’s more than a little disturbing to read that the cult packed up and headed to Canada because their practices of child abuse were becoming known in the States. Does anyone know if there is a significant level of awareness in New Brunswick of the practices of the Jolly Farmer group? Are there people in that area keeping some degree of watch on what is going on?
    Jonathon Keith.

    • People have tried to do this. But then the question becomes who do you blame. The parents who left us there the people who were being forced to do those things or the owner who would escape and rule from a safe country. Every time any investigation happened we were brain washed into believing we were evil if we gave info other then what we were told to say. For myself I would not want to even try to testify against this whole experience. Most of us came to some acceptance of what happened to us. Something else to remember was a lot of this happened in the sixties and early seventies. In the late seventies rules changed they no longer used the beatings. The younger children were not used as slave labor. Yes we suffered as children. I try each day still to sort out what was inappropriate teachings and what is right for myself.

    • Jonathan, I talked to some of the local people there in Woodstock, NB, and they think the JF group is strange. They told of an incident that happened when they were building the place in which a construction worker died from toxic fumes in the greenhouse. The locals found it odd that his family was never acknowledged by the Jollies and that it seemed to be a hushed matter. They are savvy and know how to evade authorities or how to get “favors”.
      Perhaps you would know who to contact in Canada….or how to raise awareness in the local community. There must be some agency there that would do a thorough investigation
      When we were there, my mother’s family contacted the FBI, but they left it up to the local officials to investigate the matter. The mayor of Newport, NH came and took a look around and interviewed my mother. But the cult leaders somehow knew the official was coming and they took my mother aside and prompted her on what to say. They promised her better working conditions and used their brainwashing techniques to make her comply. It’s hard for most people to understand how brainwashing works, but when you take someone and cut them off from the rest of the world including their families….no newspapers, no tv, no radio, then that person begins to lose their identity, and they no longer think for themselves.

      • Will continue to work on raising awareness, just in hopes that more vigilance might make a difference. I don’t know about how to do this officially yet but will look into it.
        I did hear that a whole group of families recently left the Jolly Farmer group and started up their own farms. Maybe in the modern age of communication it’s getting more difficult to keep people cut off and intimidated.

      • joy hi this is mitch carr where are your brothers and sisters these days

  39. April 2, 2012

    My brother, Oliver Pinter (Isaac) joined High View Church Farm about 1961 and is still with the group in New Brunswick. He and his wife, Grace, have 5 children and about 14 grandchildren. Oliver was given the name Isaac when he went to HVCF. About 10 years ago, he dropped that name and is now called Ollie, short for Oliver.

    Ollie was introduced to HVCF by the Hatfield brothers and several years later, he married their sister, Grace. I don’t know her birth name. They seem to be happy serving the Lord.

    There was a time when Ollie was turned out of HVCF because George Eversfield told him he had Satan in him and would be told if he can return. He and Grace had a young family then. Ollie went to my mother’s home near Schenectady, NY and spent his time reading the Bible. I was visiting my mom at the time. He waited several days for the phone call from the farm. It finally came and he was accepted back into the fold. George Eversfield had to exert his power mentally to his flock.

    Ollie and Grace spent the past 4 years in Manila, parenting an orphanage for girls, ages toddler to 18. There are about 20 girls in the orphanage. The Lord decided that 4 years was enough and they went back to NB. However, Ollie and Grace are going back this summer to spend a month at the orphanage.

    My husband, Russ, and our children have been to visit HVCF several times, and a few years ago Russ and I spent time with Ollie and Grace in Maine. Ollie’s main concern is discussing the Lord. We try to change the subject, but it isn’t easy because Ollie is very persistent.

    I recently read Kate Gale’s book, Lake of Fire and decided to guest blog.

    Does anyone remember my brother? I would love to hear from you if you do.

    Thank you,

    • Hello Pat Childers….I remember Isaac and Grace very well. I remember that he spent some time in Bolivia at one point. I remember their wedding and have pictures of them with George and Sarah at John and Carole’s wedding. Isaac…I mean Ollie, was the best man.
      George often called on Ollie to administer 6 of the best.
      Back then they were happy people as well, or so it seemed. One time I worked with him… remodeling the bathroom in the old farm house.
      When I left they had small children. If you would like to correspond, I would be happy to share more memories and photos with you. My email is joy.fussell@hotmail.com.

      • Hello Joy,
        Thank you for your response. I will be in touch with you via e-mail.

    • I have wonderful memories of Oliver/Isaac from the very first years he lived at the Farm (I lived there too at that time). He was like a big brother to me. He had a quiet warmth and humor that was endearing. Actually, for the first period he was still known as Oliver there (since I wrote a newsletter for the period 1960-1961 I actually have written records of some trivial thing, like this). To answer one of your questions: I can see from my newsletter than Grace’s former name was Margaret Hatfield. Of course I knew her well too.

      • Hi Chris,
        I am happy to receive such kind words from you regarding my brother, Oliver/Isaac. He was always kind and warm to me and our two other sisters. My husband and I are hoping to get to the Farm (New Brunswick) in September for “Open Farm Day.” I wonder if any contributors to this blog will be going to the open house.

      • Pat: I am intrigued by this Open Farm Day. By your post, I can see that you are somewhat critical of the community. They have no problem with your going back there? I have many mixed feelings about the community (having lived there in the very early years when it was more exploratory, and actually exciting in some ways, and not regimented and harsh). I’m intrigued by the idea of going back and seeing people I know and meeting people I don’t know. Is there some way perhaps that we can communicate more about this off line? (Maybe Kate can reveal our email addresses off line?)

      • hi i have little knowlege of the canadian branch but shortly before nh was winding down I had a friendly visit there and asked a new person about some old regulars and she had never heard of them but her answer was …maybe they are at that jolly farmer place. now when i was there we knew everyone .so its not the same old family as when i was there. why are those days so vivid in our memories no other time period in my life is so outstanding …i hate being manipulated by anyone. mitch carr

      • Chris,
        It’s not that I am critical of the community…it’s just that I read “Lake of Fire” recently and had no idea of the life that was led there. I know I needed permission to visit my brother from George (or whomever granted permission), and thought that a little odd. Oliver was happy there with his beautiful and wonderful wife and children. He had direction, something he did not have growing up. He said the Lord is his anchor. I am happy that he is happy. My email adddress is pat2818@hotmail.com if you want to contact me.

  40. Hi everyone, I just recently got in touch with this blog.I’m happy we can talk about the past.I first came to HV at age 8, I believe.My sister Lucy and I were brought there from Quebec for our Summer holidays.This was the beginning of a horror story.It sure was one weird world we grew up in, eh?Our family name was Cousineau, if anyone remembers the family with 10 kids from Quebec.I’d love to hear from anyone who remembers me from way back then.Hope to hear from you!

    • Hi Lise,
      I remember you I’m Debbie Casey, I’ve been married my name now is Deborah Steinberg. We were in the same squad while we were there. Would love to here from you. My email address is dsteinberg60@gmail.com

  41. I remember High View, the Farm and the School. I first went there in 1973 and from there to Bermuda, back to New Hampshire to get married, which did not happen, and then to Vancouver Island at Pleasant Acres Farm and Eaglecrest Lodge. I also worked at the Landmark Lumber mill in Parksville, BC. My family, the Cousineau’s have been involved with this group since the early 70’s and some of my siblings are with them in New Brunswick, Canada today. Even though I left the group in 1986, it was many years later that I was finally free of the guilt and condemnation of not being “part of the family”. There was much love there from the other brethren and I believe the Spirit of the Lord directed many of the followers, but it was George Eversfield’s domination and utter authority that caused many of the heartaches described in these comments. The bondage I felt even after leaving the cult and living my own life, affected my relationship with my first wife and the two children we had together. My father, Sylvio Cousineau, was the one who was instrumental in leading me to New Hampshire, and like many of us was run through the ringer while he lived there.
    Oddly later in life, Pops was the one who ultimately helped become free of that cult, and though he is gone now, I will always honour him for speaking what he believed was the truth. Does any one feel the need for more insights or information into what things went on in the cult? I volunteer myself to provide what information I can to anyone who asks.
    My name is Mike Cousineau, I live in Victoria, BC, Canada and my email is: mpc@telus.net.
    My brother Denis is married to Patience and lives with her and her mother, Faith. My sister Madeleine stills works for the Jolly Farmer in New Brunswick and though most of my 9 brothers and sisters are not involved with them, some of them to this day would return if given the opportunity. This is the biggest curse that I see from George’s influence:
    that families were torn apart, children denying parents and forsaking what is normal love and affection. Even now members of the cult will not contact other relatives who are not part of “the family”.
    I knew Isaac and Grace. I was there and took Grace to the hospital when she got her glove caught in a wood planer at the mill at the College Highway Garage and lost half her hand. Many other tragedies happened that no one speaks enough about: the time the James Elmore had his face burned from an overheated engine’s radiator, the death of Tom Ogden Sr. from overexertion while he was dancing “in the joy of the Lord” (I loved Tom and his wife Joan). I think of Ross Williams from Bermuda who died in agony from cancer waiting for the Lord to make her whole. How many others of us were sent away not really knowing why we didn’t fit in? How it was those who accepted everything that “George said”, that went along and conformed even though everything in them was appalled. Bob and Mary Joy English who’s son Daniel Lovejoy married George’s daughter, Sue and whose other daughter Sarah lived with George for many years until “the Lord said they should get married”. I have many stories to tell, but until I was told about Kate Gale’s blog, today, I didn’t have any venue to share this. Charity Gale how sincere she was when she lived at the Farm. I can still see her face now looking concerned and trying to make sense of what George was preaching. How it just didn’t work. And Martha Chesher, mentioned by others above, who one day proclaimed “I’ve had it!” and had decided to quit the group out of frustration, only to have George cry out “Praise the Lord! Now she gets it!” No one got it! There was nothing to get, only disappointment, condemnation and fear. The love that was there was temporary from the leaders and sympathetic from the brethren, because we all knew anyone of us could be next.
    I really hope to hear from others, not to share misery for company, but to help find some relief of the pain that may still continue with many of those who spent time there.

    • Hello Mike,
      I am Pat Childers,Isaac’s sister. Yes, Grace’s hand was mutilated but she learned quickly how to get along with half a hand. Grace is such a sweet person. She accepts her misfortune and accepts what The Lord has in his plans for his followers. I am thankful for you getting her to the hospital. It must have been quite a scare for you and everyone else. Their son Joseph was injured while using a chain saw. The chain broke and struck his face, leaving a huge scar. The last time I saw Joseph, the scar was not very noticeable.

      Isaac, Grace, and four of their five children live on the farm in NB. There are fourteen grandchildren between the five siblings. (Isaac has reverted back to his real name, Oliver, or Ollie.)

      If you want to contact me, my e-mail is pat2818@hotmail.com.
      I too, recently discovered Kate’s blog. Have you read her book “Lake of Fire”? If not, you might want to. It’s about her youth at the farm. I bought it through Amazon.

    • mike lol I remember you taking a machettie and weed wacking all around that horrible school only to lay feeling half dead the next day lol where is claude i gave him my watch ….wonder if he still has it. mitch carr

      • i think i meant roger sorry

  42. Well hello to all, this is Mitch Carr brother to Mike and Julie, Julie and I are near Harrisburg Pa and Mike is in Alberta Canada.I have read all these entries and found them all to be true and accurite but so much more went on behind the scenes.My brother Mike was a favorite of George and was privy to alot and yes he was made to sleep with guns because George was loosing it and thought ..they ..were out to get him. My sister was kicked out because she slid a note under Georges door acusing him of the affair with Sarah……she was promply sent back to Pa. Yes there were some legal actions taken and from what I was told there was some back wages paid to Dan trimble as well as others but of course being faithful followes not all kept the money.The stories can go on forever and it was a strange place to live , however i did learn a few things which is a good . I just had supper with Hob Fisher and of course had a few laughs about all this .I remember all you blogers , Allens , Cousineaus, Hoffmans, Brad W. Cheshers,Naomi ,Darrow , Isaac , Simonsons,Caseys , Hatfield and a Chatfield, Jacobs, Stoltzfus sisters,Kalenoski’s, English,and yes Michelle.and I’m sorry I know there are so many more.Please feel free to mail me any time mitchcarr@embarqmail.com. and one of many final thoughts… New Hampshire was a great place to from and one question to anyone still connected to the farm…….can’t you think for yourself ,why do you have to follow someone…ask anyone left from Jim Jones organization

  43. WOW….the flood of memories is overwhelming. Emotions that I thought were long healed and resolved are suddenly right on the surface when I learned of this blog. I was at HVCFS for several years, along with my two brothers..Mike and Mitch. These were some painful and damaging years in my life—–years that were very very difficult if not impossible to recover from. Thank God I went on to raise three great kids and have lived a very successful life, but the scars are never far from the surface. The memories are for the most part horrid and only a few are bittersweet at best. I am grateful for the exposure to the “practicle things in life..such as how to plant, harvest, cook, care for animals, milk cows, and the list goes on. But such mental and emotional cruelty and complete degradation and bashing of a kid’s emotional stability was totally uncalled for. That man (Georgrge Eversfield) was nothing short of an egomaniac and a cruel beast. Severe words, but non the less, accurate as seen through my eyes. I honestly marvel that there are those who honestly sing his praises…..WOW, they certainly had a very different experience than I had. I remember all the “KIDS” mentions in these blogs, and some suffered terrible atrocities at the hand of this man and his proteges. He preyed on the adults who were weak and needy…those who were followers, looking for someone to follow—many were searching for answers, as many of us do in our lifetime. He took advantage and manipulated them. Lives and families were destroyed—ripped apart by his evil manipulation. As I look back I wonder….How is it normal for a child to be pressured into calling their parents by their first name and not Dad and Mom? Where is the warmth and acceptance that is so necessary for a child during those years? I witnessed the atrocities done to everyone of those kids mentioned…, and more. Trust me—they did not stretch the truth in the least. The physical abuse is something I believe that you can get over—–although certainly not excusable,……..but the emotional abuse was overwhelming. When was kicked out, I was devastated……thought that:I was surely going to hell because I was constantly ‘OUT OF THE SPIRIT’……Whatever the heck that was to a kid. However, that is not the Lord that I found ……..not hateful, cruel, tyranical, and unforgiving….quite the opposite. I thank God that I was kicked out and was saved from further damage at that man’s hand. I know Iam coming across as very bitter—-I hope not so much that it is unhealthy, but honestly, aside from the people from there that I would love to connect with again, I do not have many positive things to say about my experience at “the farm”. I feel compassion for those still ‘imprisoned’ there. There are a couple of people I have thought about through the years…It would be great to hear how you are doing. Julie53critters@comcast.net or you can find me on Facebook Julie Carr

  44. I’m a local person who lives near where Jolly’s are now, in Canada. It was my cousin who died in the fire at Jolly’s when they were setting up their New Brunswick location. And yes, it was extremely hushed up. Jolly’s members were not allowed to talk about it. And no, the family received no acknowledgement etc…, nor did anyone from Jolly’s attend the funeral.

    I have a friend who used to be a member of Jolly Farmers and left. From the little she has told me, it’s still a cult. They left around ’98 or ’99 when she was a teen. She doesn’t like to speak about her time there. I do know that her family was shunned when they left. They were not allowed any contact with their friends and family who remained behind, and they were told they would be going to hell, because their only salvation was through them.

    My husband also worked at Jollys for many years. He did say that once George died and Sarah took over, that things have definitely lightened up, especially how they dress. While I do not think they are involved with the community, they are more open to the community now, in fact three times a year hosting an Open Farm Day which consists of a farmer’s market type atmosphere, hay rides and pony rides for the kids, tours of the farm, the greenhouses etc…

    Also, their “rules” on contact with members who have left have definitely changed. My friend finally returned to one of the Open Farm days just last year. It was the first time she had been to the compound in roughly 12 years, and instead of shunned, they were welcomed with open arms, literally.

    They now run an orphanage in the Phillipines, and many of the families are adopting some of the children. They are also “importing” families to join the community. They work there, and some have married into the community. Some members now live off-compound, though still very close to it. Many of the young are now leaving the community. It would definitely appear that the group is falling apart.

    In short… I fully believe the history of abuse they have, but I would also be surprised if it still goes on today. Do I still think it’s a cult? For sure. But again, I don’t think the PHYSICAL child abuse goes on that used to. No one can speak for the mental.

    • yes I was told that NB is disbanded and they are in the phillipines…….those poor Phillpines

      • NB is not disbanded, the business is still running

  45. Well Kate, I’ve shed a lot of tears in the last hour or so. Thank you for creating this blog. I’m sorry for the abuse you suffered, we all suffered.

    Like others have said on here, as much as was bad, there were good things too. I’m grateful for those good things. However, they do not in any way lessen the badness of the bad. All the good I got from High View could have been had without any of the bad.

    Unlike many who have posted here, I now consider myself atheist, at least functionally. I remained a Christian for many years after leaving High View, and my deconversion has almost nothing to do with those years. I consider the evidence from science and history to be highly unfavorable toward the claim that the Christian God exists at all. But that said, the abusive treatment we received in the name of that God and His will does not argue favorably for Him either.

    I wish you happiness and success for the rest of your life, and I hope it is as good as it is long.

    Crying tears I didn’t know were still there after all these years,

    John (Pantzer)

  46. Reading everyone’s postings shows how things have changed over the years. Maybe they feel they have needed to change as times have changed. There also seems to be a lot more contact with the outside world than there used to be as their business has changed. Being there from 1965 to 1976, the place used to be quite self supportive. The international business now seems to be their support of existence.

    I believe Mr. Eversfield had a lot of psycological issues and was far from being professional in dealing with people and their problems. He was however, a very intelligent person. He was also a user of people and I belive he used people for his own benefit in some ways. I think the fact that he thought the end of the world was at hand and that he was obsessed with saving those he had drawn to him by taking us all out to sea in large boats we were building in Bermuda and Maine showed he was a little, if nothing else, unstable. For some reason, people were drawn to him. He was very charismatic and was very good with words. I think that even his accent attracted people to him. When you can convince someone to give you everything you own for which you have worked your whole life for, leave your life as you know it, hand over your children for someone else to raise almost never seeing them, work for him for nothing other than food, clothing and a place to stay, and abide by his rules and his way if existence, you have got to be good with words. He had a strict control of people and was very aware of those around him both close and distant. I was distant, but he was very aware of my presence as he was very aware of the “quiet ones” for fear, I’m sure, of being exposed. People were led so blindly that any disruption of the control might surely leave room for question. I was asked to leave for that very reason. I was being very quiet. To this date, that was the best decision I have ever made. I do believe that my time spent has, in more ways than one, made me a better person than I otherwise would be. I do believe in God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit but do not go to church. I believe that if you live your every day life to the best of your ability, knowing God’s existence and thanking Him for your own existence, knowing right from wrong and doing right, your life hereafter will be rewarded. I think church is too commercial and one does not need a building for worship. It’s what you know in your heart and how you act.

    I still have a sister with her family who I have not seen or communicated with since 1979. I have no desire to see her as she chose her life there over her family as she was the one who, “turned me in for being quiet”. I’m glad she did, but at that time I was very sore. Maybe I should not hold it against her as I was brainwashed just as much as she. I do pray she is happy and has lived life the way she has wanted instead of the way another man has wanted. At first I thought I was going to Hell, as that was instilled into everyone’s mind. But, in fact, I did not and have a family with my wife and two kids who I love very much and have lived a good life thus far.

    I had tried to forget this past life for so long, but it was good to see some familiar names. I hope you all are now happy and are well. There are some names I do not remember or recognize. I do remember Joy Allen, Mitch Carr and Brad but do not remember Ken Roberts who all replied my earlier reply. I hope you are all well.

    • tim hi this is mitch contact me love to hear what youve been doing

  47. If anyone would like to join our group on facebook…High View Church Farm Alumni…..please follow the link below… we can share photos and memories. It’s been so good to reconnect with each other after all these years.

    • face…..who..???

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  50. hi id like to know what they believe in and what is child abuse please tell me more where did they come from is it a cult or a culture of life

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    • My grandfather just celebrated his 92rd birthday, and my aunt and her children and grandchildren attended. My aunt, her kids and grandchildren all live on this farm. I had never met any of them. They all had cars, and looked quite normal, I wouldn’t even describe them as particularly ‘plain’. they brought and decorated the birthday cake for my grandad, so the aren’t totally against birthdays. Prayer before dinner was a little odd, it was a rehearsed prayer mixed with some borderline chanting. Also, there was talk of going inside to ‘sing’, which didn’t happen, but I’m sure it would have been interesting. They all seemed happy and quite normal.

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  56. show it to the ..World… ok that was a joke for those who lived there lol lol lol

  57. I’ve been an employee at Jolly Farmer for 17 years.The stuff Kate Gale posted about HVCF and Jolly Farmer is total bull shit. You said that George and Sarah Everesfield had sex outside of marriage. I knew them and especially George was a great boss. Its too bad he passed away. Your argument is lame, you said you saw them with binoculars… Now that’s a joke. Just logically if they were trying to hide it they wouldn’t leave there curtains wide open…like duh. Since when can you see people having sex using binoculars. Most people want a little privacy. In other words this is one big blown up fucking lie. The second thing about them leaving NH to NB because of investigations by the FBI. Seriously, you think if they were really abusing kids the FBI would let them just leave the country. No, they left NH because they didn’t like the corruption in the U.S. government. Second lie sent to hell…. Thirdly they do not abuse their kids…they are perfectly normal fun loving kids who know how to work hard. Most kids now a days all they can do is play with their x box. I’ve worked with their kids and they are just as happy as any other kids. This shit about heads being stuffed in trash cans is a lie. The other thing is you call it a cult. I looked cult up in the dictionary… it says a group of people with common beliefs, well if that’s the case you people who say all this fucking lies about perfectly normal people are a CULT! So I know you may not think very highly of these guys it doesn’t give any reason to write fuckin lies about them. Don’t you have anything better to do. Probably not….:) Any way this post will probably be taken off but at least a few people will here the other side of the story.

    • Hmmm, first of all your immaturity, your profanity, and your command of the English language leave something to be desired. Better keep working on that GED. Anyway, if you have been working there 17 years, that makes you one of the early New Brunswick employees, which means you have zero knowledge of what went on before they went to Canada. Things have certainly changed, but you might want to pull your head out of the sand and realize that everyone had a different experience there and many people were deeply hurt by that place. Probably one of the worst things is their inability to admit any wrongdoing or attempt to make things right. I know all this because I was there much longer than you and much before you.

      • wonder if he ever witnessed 6 of the best from a steroid buffed man

      • That’s right Leo….they are self righteous and are in ceaseless prayer with God so they can’t be wrong about anything.

    • must be nice to live in that Disney World in your head

    • “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and to remove all doubt.” -A. Lincoln.

      Congrats, you’ve successfully accomplished the latter.

      • and I thought a guy named Murphy said that and here it was good old Abe.

    • How could one possibly get this many people to tell blatant lies on the same subject? You missed a few things in the definition of a cult as well. There was definitely child abuse and George slept with the secretary long before he married her.

      • Things have certainly changed a lot since most of us were there. I also know that being an employee is completely different than living there. I married a previous employee and he did not know 1/2 of what was going on there. He was shocked! So, being an employee in no way makes someone informed as to what goes on behind closed doors, when things are covered up and kept hush, hush.

      • No way can this guy have any insight into life on the inside in the time period we are discussing. Cursing like a sailor … would get you beaten, then drawn and quartered, then burned at the stake, then publicly humiliated, then expelled. Congrats … you’ve helped exactly nobody “here [sic] the other side of the story.”

    • To the recent employee… Thank you for sharing your experience. I was at High View from the early 70’s to 1983… Left one day for vacation and was STUNNED to be told on my way home (my parents had already been asked to leave some years earlier) that I wouldn’t be coming back. Told I’d be better off living with my family (well there’s a shocker)…

      One thing I think this forum is useful for, is for people to share memories and significantly different experiences. And people did come out of High View over the past (almost 50) years with a wide range of differing experiences. My personal experience was made up of some amazingly good memories, combined with more fear than I still know what to do with. It is very difficult, and without trying to be preachy, a bit unwise, to tell anyone on this forum that they are outright lying. Perhaps wiser to say that my experience of a time or place or person was very different than theirs.

      Merry Christmas and may God bless you. Oh and I haven’t seen many (if any) comments removed from this blog. It seems to be a pretty free speech zone, so different points of view are allowed.

    • Interesting that you say you’ve been an employee for 17 years. There is a very short list of people that have been there that long, and I know every single one of them. I can pretty much guarantee that you’re not one of them. In fact, I know it. It’s interesting how passionate you are about things that you have no way of knowing about first hand…..

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  60. Naomi, I’m Ken(ny) Roberts from Phippsburg, ME and was part of the “big boys” with Rob English, David Casey, George Darrow, Gordie Blythe and Rusty Casey. I was there with my sister Judy & younger brother Kevin from Oct 1967 into April 1968. We helped to build the school. My dad pulled us out without warning. It was a sad time for me, but my siblings were pleased. I returned to visit in 1975 to check things out, and try to discover what I had experienced. I saw George & Sarah, and a few others that I remebered. Seemed that most of the guys my age moved to Canada to avoid the draft.
    In 1982 I made contact with some of the guys that were delivering work in Mass as part of the “Jolly Farmer”.
    Was Charity Gale, Kate’s mom? I remember her well. And Christia(sp), Tom Ogdon, Tom Pollard, Phil Jacob and his sons& daughters, and of course Peter Priest, the author of that famous Apple song: “The Core” The core, the core, it’s what the worm goes for, the core is what the worm goes for, the core is what the worm goes for, the core, the core!
    There were lots of questions, and few direct answers, but I met the Lord Jesus there, but lost contact with Him as I pursued my own desires. But thankfully Jesus didn’t lose me, about ten years ago I discovered Christ again for the first time.
    I now live in Marlborough, MA and can be reached by Ken@conveyorguys.com I would love to hear from George Darrow. God Bless, Ken

  61. hi this is mitch carr we never met but all the kids had great storis about you when i arrived and in fact a group of us with bob warner returned a box of your clothes to your house one evening only your mom and sister were there so i never met you …hope you survived better than some of these people.

  62. The people I remember well are Faith Hoffman, who was very kind to me. I became friends with her three children. I remember Christina (Levy?), Naomi Kalb, Carol Blythe, Tom Ogden, Ted and Charlotte Stevenson, Mrs. Elmore (I forget her first name) I was a classmate of her son, Jim. I only vaguely remember John Chatfield. Of course, I well remember George Eversfield and the woman who eventually became his young wife. I was never aware of any physical abuse that may have taken place there, but there were arguably a few who must have endured some degree of mental and emotional abuse. As a 13-year old, it was difficult to discern what distress any of the adults may have been enduring at the time. What do you know about the people who eventually left and what were the circumstances which caused the farm and the school to dissolve? I believe Mrs. Hoffman and her elder daughter went to Vancouver.

  63. My uncle, and several other members of my mom’s family, were at The Farm for several years. My mom has blocked the bad out and she is lucky. My uncle has never recovered. He passed away last Friday and I felt curious about the place that caused him SO much pain. I am glad this exists. I wish I was curious earlier so I could have better understood and helped him more. I blame the Farm on his death. I’m glad you all have continued to press onward. Love to you. I am sorry the farm is a part of your past. 😦

  64. what was your uncle’s name

    • Steve Kalinoski

      • Oh I’m so sorry to hear that, ,when we were young Steve was a good friend.My parents drove him from NH to Delaware one time.I would love to talk to you ,feel free to E mail me ,I have so many questions. mitch

      • Thank you Mitch. I will email you.

    • What is your email Mitch? The one from above in the thread did not go through.

  65. carrswelding@hotmail.com

  66. Well I’m here a long time after most of the above posts, so not sure how many still visit here. I’m Mike Kalinoski. Most knew me as Michael I think. (Steve’s brother, Amanda’s uncle.) Amanda is Debbie’s daughter. I mention this as I know a lot of you were closer to Deb’s age than mine. Deb’s raised two awesome gorgeous daughters (as have I) that are grown and recently married themselves.
    It is difficult not to be bitter about what was done to Steve by George. He did have physical issues as well, but the mental issues from what was done were often overwhelming for him.
    For myself I remember many of the types of things discussed here as well as those in Kate’s book Lake of Fire. I read one book called Water Moccasins which I think is the same thing with a different name. Is Wild Horses out yet?
    I guess I’m a bit like Deb in blocking bad things out. Even while there I often just ignored much of what was going on and enjoyed what I could. The camping, boating, mountain climbing in the White Mountains as well as on the Pacific coast of mainland BC and the west coast of Vancouver Island. Yes, I even enjoyed the infamous West Coast Trail. I was there from age 3 in 1968 until I was 15 in 1980. I did more things in that time than many people get to do in a lifetime. I even liked some of the child labor. Felling large trees with a chainsaw then driving a logging skidder up a mountain side and dragging the logs down to a landing. Driving farm tractors to do haying, plowing etc. All at 12 years old. What’s not to like? Dangerous, illegal, and really scary to my mom had she known at the time yes, but I had a ball.
    The use of religion to control people though was absolutely insidious. It was just that at my age it was just too much to deal with and I mostly ignored it. I can remember sitting through hours long assemblies and at the end having no clue whatsoever what was said or read. I just day dreamed about the next adventure. George did notice once and threw his glasses at me to get my attention. It worked for a few minutes. The thing I got in trouble for the most was NOT getting in enough trouble. Seriously, I was “too quiet and not open enough” about all the sin I must be doing, but not confessing. Well duh. Did they think I WANTED six of the best. I remember kids getting it with a riding cane.
    As far as George and Sarah. Yes I actually saw them several years before they were married “in the act”. I’ve told very few people about it. They thought everyone had left the school to go down to the Jolly for a meal as we did in those days. But at the last minute another boy and I were left behind to take care of something (I don’t remember what). George and Sarah were in the little office off the library at the end of wing 5 and I was walking by on the porch. Those big windows didn’t even have curtains, but like I say they thought everyone was gone. I was only about 12 and having lived there since age 3 didn’t know much about sex, but whatever they were doing did not involve clothes and if it was wrestling, George seemed to be winning. I was sent away to live with my parents with little or no explanation shortly after that, but allowed to return just under a year later. George let me know after my return that he knew, or at least strongly suspected that I had seen them. He told me I was back by his good graces (he pretty much dropped the religious BS with me after that whenever we talked privately. At the time I was shocked that he talked about religion rather like useful tool.). He said he didn’t want to explain to my brother and sister who were still there why he didn’t want me there. He told me about things he had done regarding my brother Steve who was gone by then, which scared the bleep out of me being 14 at the time, and threatened me not to take advantage of what I knew. Of course what I really knew at that point was that I shouldn’t have come back, but I was scared to leave again too.
    He was nice to me after that though in a strange, scary way. I got in trouble for staying up all night talking to a girl. (When I was younger like a lot of people I guess, I seemed to require almost no sleep, so it was amazing that this was the only time I got caught staying up all night, and it wasn’t even close to the worst thing I did.) Like I said we got in trouble, but next thing we knew George had intervened and said the Lord had shown him that the girl and I should be allowed to be a couple as long as we were open and didn’t sneak around or anything. Yeah right. It was never really explained what all we should or shouldn’t do. We never did anything bad by any normal standards. I may have read some -eh hem- where that we were supposed to have kissed, but it may have been literary licence or something. At one point the girl was to be kicked out, and I was told it had nothing to do with me. Once someone was kicked out they were a non-subject. You didn’t ask about it or talk about it. However, George expressed surprise that I hadn’t come to him and fought to have my “girlfriend” be allowed to stay. I told him that of course I wanted her to stay, but had been told it had nothing to do with me, and assumed it was some great unrelated sin that I shouldn’t talk about. It was then decided that she would stay, but we weren’t to be “a couple” anymore, whatever that meant. At any rate my quietness as usual made me suspect, and it was always assumed we were up to something. At the end I was glad to be sent packing the second and final time in the spring of 81.
    I remember many of the people on here. Naomi and Patience were both counselors of my age group of around 5 or 6 year olds, and both were very nice to me. I know my parents sometimes communicate with Naomi. I met Patience’s daughter at my niece’s (Jonathan’s daughter) wedding, and she looked just like I remembered Patience. There were a lot of ex HVCFS folks there and it was fun to see them. I think that was 2004.
    I remember hanging out with Richard Cousineau in the garage where his dad and mine worked together. I remember most of the Cousineaus, the Blythes, the Hoffmans, the Pantzers, the Pinters, the Bests, the Carrs, the Jacobs, the Caseys and so many more. I’ve often wondered about Jon Casey. He and I were good friends. I was good friends with the Lovejoy/English kids especially Jonathan and David. It was a bit like being best friends with princes. When we were alone, they treated me as an equal, and even seemed to look up to me in some ways. But when their parents were around, they had their place and I had mine.
    In the late 90’s I drove around the old property in East Lempster. At the farm on Nichols Road, I saw Hoey Jacob. He had been my counselor at one point and he and I and two other guys my age had spent a week or so hiking around Garibaldi Provincial Park in BC one summer. I talked to him for a minute or two, and he pointed behind the farm telling me about the orchard that had been planted there. I mentioned recalling that I helped his dad Phil transplant corn seedlings in that field many years before when we had fresh corn on the cob for sale at the Jolly by July 4th which is of course very early for NH. Hoey remembered and said “oh yeah, the Lord still talks about that sometimes.” I said “what?”, not sure I’d heard him correctly. He seemed to catch himself, and said “George. . . George still talks about that sometimes.” I wasn’t sure if it was just a one time mistake or if they really called George Lord sometimes. It was a bit odd either way.
    I hope all of you are doing well and are happy. I could probably write about experiences there for hours. To those who have had more recent contact with the folks there, and found them to be wonderful, I hope they really are different, but I can tell you that there were people in the 70’s who lived in the area in NH that had very similar reactions to their dealings with people at The Farm. Many of the people there really were, and I’m sure are, very nice people. That just doesn’t mean that what you read here isn’t true. It is.


    Kate, (and anyone else), please forgive my grammar mistakes. I’m an electrical engineer, not a writer. That’s my excuse, and I’m sticking to it.

    • I think we called you Pickle…lol….well I too learned a lot in NH and not everything in this world is all bad…….too bad they had to mess it up with their version of religion .I was sorry to hear about your brother .This is Mitch Carr and you have a great family ..please tell your mom and dad I send my reguards…mitch

  67. Well since all other employees that have commented on this were blind to the truth and close minded. I will put my opinions on here. I have no doubt in my mind that all that you have experienced in the early days of the farm and of it being a full blown fucked up cult, there is some truth to what the other employees put on here. My whole family works there and have (ofcourse) always been treated fairly. My mom started their first over 11 yrs ago and back then things were much different than they are now, she even described it as a cult as it was back then. However I do believe that time has changed the Jollys. Although Sarah still runs the place, many of the families have moved off the compound Although still affiliated with them. None of the children (unless of age) work at the greenhouse that is all outside workers. My family and I have noticed a change in Sarah’s and the church’s heavy hand. I have been in their houses and they are allowed to watch movies and listen to music, their children are now happy and treated as they should. They now believe in technology and it’s pros, they believe in giving back to their community and workers. Yes it is true that many Filipino people were brought into the community to work and be part of the church as well as Jamaicans to work for them. Many Filipino live with them while Jamaican live in their housing off compund or in town. They don’t govern and rule as they used to as many of the Jollies are allowed to pursue their dreams and lives as they please, their older kids can go to college or university and come back without shunning. This is just my opinion and what I have noticed over the years, they most definitely changed their ways and loosened up. Like I said I’m not blind to who they used to be and am not excusing or denying the atrocities they committed to all of you, and understand the need for some type of acknowledgment from them. Just maybe knowing that things really have changed there can bring some peace and knowing that other children are not experiencing all you did at their hands.
    One other question, Peter Priest is that his real name or does he have a different last name?

    • I think Priest was it ..we never heard anything else but I could be wrong….he was a brain….

  68. I would be interested in any interesting memories and impressions people have about my mother, Ruth Jacob (Phil’s wife). I lived at the Farm during the (very different, “charismatic”) start-up period of 1959-1962. I then lived with the Hoffmans in Bermuda for three years. I left the community and became estranged from my mother in 1965, seeing her only rarely after that. If you have any interesting insights, please let me know by replying to this message and then I’ll post an email address for further communications. (This is curiosity of a personal nature, and the discussion would probably not be of interest to everyone reading this blog.)

    • HI this is Mitch Carr, I remember your mom as being a soft spoken quiet but a lovely woman that was good with us kids. I remember a story she told of when she was a little girl in New York City, she saw an airplane flying into a sky scraper and logged .I remembered that during the 911 attack. funny things that stick in your mind.

      • Thanks Mitch! What a strange story. Must have been when she lived in NYC but that was when she was in her late 20s. (She did the Bohemian/intellectual thing in Greenwich Village them. Was a typist for the French writer Anaïs Nin. Things that were very interesting but that she would not have mentioned after she changed her life.)

      • the way I remembered she was a little girl and it was an early memory for her

    • I remember your Mother, She and Phil used to watch me and my brothers. She was tiny in person big in personality. Sweetheart of a lady, I always remember how cheerful she was, very upbeat even when handling diabetes. I have moments of time I remember, I was pretty young so not a lot of memories I will be happy to try and remember more.

  69. if you text …717 776 6763

    • I’ll get in touch with you tomorrow using that number. It would be fun to talk. (She grew up in Salt Lake City and never saw NYC until she was in her mid-to-late 20s. Memory may have played tricks on her. I’ll ask my uncle (her brother) about the story.)

  70. Kate, Is there a way to email you personally? I sent a message to your facebook but we are not official facebook friends so it will go to a filtered inbox, usually on accessible when on facebook on a desktop. I have some info you may want for projects or writing or …?

  71. Hi. I find myself missing my uncle who passed away a couple of years ago after suffering from a lifetime of pain as a result of this farm. Tonight I search for new answers and information about his life. If anyone has stories or info about Steve Kalinoski, whether good or “bad”, please email me Amanda dot Shanklin at gmail dot com. Thank you. I didn’t ask him enough questions about his painful past when he was alive because I was afraid. But I know now that he needed me to ask him and it would have helped him if I had been there as a support while he lived the haunting nightmare of his past every day. If you can share anything, I’d be most grateful. Thank you

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