Malabar Farm in Pleasant Valley was the dream of the Pulitzer Prize-winning author, Louis Bromfield. I had never heard of Louis Bromfield, so I did a little research on him also. One of Mansfield, Ohio's most famous natives, his home was Malabar Farm near Lucas, Ohio, from 1939 until his death in 1956. Bromfield studied agriculture at Cornell University from 1914 to 1916, but transferred to Columbia University to study Journalism. His time at Columbia would be short lived and he left after less than a year to go to war. After serving with the American Field Service in World War I and being awarded the Croix de Guerre and the Legion of Honor, he returned to New York City and found work as a reporter. In 1924, his first novel, The Green Bay Tree, won instant acclaim. He won the 1927 Pulitzer Prize for best novel for Early Autumn, which I purchased and if I get these blogs caught up, I will let you know if it is any good or not. All of his 30 books were best-sellers, and many such as The Rains Came and Mrs. Parkington, were made into successful motion pictures.
After spending a decade in France, Bromfield returned to Central Ohio in 1938 and began to put into place the principles of grass-based, sustainable farming at "Malabar Farm." Bromfied's writings turned from fiction to non-fiction and his reputation and influence as a conservationist and farmer continued to expand. The innovative and visionary work of Louis Bromfield continues to influence agricultural methodologies around the world. He was inducted into Ohio Agricultural Hall of Fame in 1996.