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Herman Reger Purdy | 1984

Known as one of the worlds top beef cattle judge.

1919-1983 | Artist: Everett Raymond Kinstler (1926-2019)

Impact & Accomplishments

Considered one of the world’s top livestock judges for four decades, presiding over 1,200 shows, master breeder Herman Purdy was a native of Harris, Missouri. His knowledge of beef cattle was so impressive that he was named the student in charge of operations for the beef barn at Ohio State University as an undergraduate. His master’s degree was earned at Pennsylvania State University.

Purdy served as professor of animal husbandry and judging team coach at both alma maters, Ohio State from 1946 to 1954, and Penn State from 1954 to 1972. Purdy’s talent for judging was also acknowledged at an early age. As a young man, he judged the famous livestock show in Perth, Scotland, as well as shows in England, Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica, Australia, and New Zealand.

In the United States, Purdy judged the International Live Stock Exposition, the American Royal, the National Western, the NAILE, and many others. In addition, he was a consultant for President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s Gettysburg Farm Angus herd. Before his death in 1985, Herman Purdy began a comprehensive book project; the finished work, Breeds of Cattle, remains a classic today

Did You Know?

His reputation as a cattleman led him to meet several US Presidents, including Dwight D. Eisenhower, with whom he developed a special working friendship raising Angus cattle on his Gettysburg Farm. Another interesting friendship developed with the Queen Mother of England and her Castle Mey herd in the north of Scotland.

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