Wilcox Farm Family History
Six generations of western farm crop production is the Wilcox family heritage. It’s been the family’s livelihood since Isaiah Wilcox first settled in Santa Clara, California after arriving from New York in 1847 and planted a pear orchard on 200 acres. The ranch prospered under the family’s farming operation for three more generations until the 1950s, when the area began transitioning to what it is know by today, i.e., “Silicone Valley”, and farming operations were replaced by asphalt, concrete and a world wide center for advanced technology.
The family’s move to the highly productive California Delta agricultural region during the 1950’s was orchestrated by fourth generation grower Frank Wilcox, who first established the family’s pear operations in this location. In the late 1950’s and early 1960’s, Frank worked with his boys (the fifth generation Wilcox brothers) to establish a progressive, diversified family farming operations which included pears, corn, wheat, barley, tomatoes, sugar beets, safflower and alfalfa .
As farm tractor design and production improved during this time, a new line of more powerful tractors gradually became the norm for most farm operations. Tillage tools designed specially for western farming conditions and field operations saw little, if any gain during this same period of time.
Fifth-generation Wilcox brother, Alan Wilcox, recognized this growing gap between increasing tractor horsepower and the lack of tillage tools to increase grower efficiencies and return upon his return from Cal Polly College to take over the family’s open field farming operations. He convinced his brothers of the need to redesign some of the basic mechanisms of these tillage tools. They began work in his uncle’s shop, with a confident belief that they could come up with design improvements on basic tillage tools that would make them better suited to unique California soil conditions and farming practices.