Wholesale & Retail Sales
The Hanlon Family
Pat & Laura, Molly Hanlon Sundstrom


                                                    By Maggy Hanlon  
The name Porcupine Hollow Farm originated in the 1970's when the Hanlon family first arrived in Central Lake. The hills and valleys were overly endowed with Porcupines. The first source of organic fertilizer for the trees came from Porcupine Poop...
Porcupine Hollow Farm has had various main functions that have changed rapidly over time.   It has been passed through many hands,  each with different qualities that caused it to go from slaughterhouse to tree farm.  All of this has taken place within  ninety years. The most recent owner is Patrick Hanlon. There are many different features around the farm that you might find interesting if you love the great outdoors and old rustic living.  
Porcupine Hollow Farm has been passed from family to family. The Knowles family owned it from the 1920s-1971.  In 1971 it was sold to Leo Waffle. Bill Murray bought the farm in 1975, and then sold it to Pat Hanlon in 1977. (Hanlon, Patrick)
William Knowles moved his family to Central Lake in 1904. He bought the slaughterhouse, meat market, and their house in town. When he died in 1927, Art Knowles took over. (Eckhardt, Marvel)
When the Knowles owned the farm they used it to produce packaged meat. They used the slaughterhouse and Black Barn for their business. The slaughterhouse was used to cut and package the meat for their meat market down town.  One night Art Knowles left the farm, like he usually did.  When he came in the morning the slaughterhouse had burnt to the ground. This happened in the 1930s. The rebuilding project started right away. The Black Barn was the stable next to Dick and Pat's Party Store (at that time Knowles and Sons Meat Market). The barn was taken apart and moved to the farm in the 1920s. David Knowles was a part owner of Knowles and Sons Meat Market, at one time (Torch, Obituaries). Bob Knowles worked in the slaughterhouse, also. Bob Knowles was drafted into World War II in 1943. Art Knowles closed the Meat Market so he could go deer hunting and he never opened it back up. (Eckhardt, Marvel)  
When Leo Waffle owned the farm he used it to cut up deer and cows. (Waffle, Leo)  
Bill Murray was thinking about building a house on the farm, but decided not to and just kept it for an investment.  (Hanlon, Patrick)
The Hanlons have used the farm to produced Christmas and Landscape trees from 1988-Present. The Hanlon family moved into the Black Barn when they bought the farm. In November of 1980 they bought a trailer until they completed building their new house in 1987. (Hanlon, Patrick)
After the Hanlons moved into their new house they sold the trailer to Larmer Franks. The Hanlons used the front porch of the trailer for an addition to the Sugar Shack and the back room for a kid's play house in the woods.  In 1979 the Chicken Coop was built. The construction of the Red Barn and the Sugar Shack was completed in 1983. The Green Barn was built in the summer of 1998. In 1992 the Back 40 acres was purchased. (Hanlon, Patrick)
There are many interesting features around the farm some of them are the woods, the many cricks and swamps,  the ponds,  the stairway to heaven,  the first farm house, the old home stead,  and the wonderful views. The woods have many fun,  scenic,  trails for horseback riding,  go-carting,  snowmobiling,  snowshoeing,  or just for a nature hike.  There are three cricks that are very refreshing in the summer time. Especially to the younger people. There are three swamps that are fun in the summer. One has a beautiful crick running through it and a tree root growing over it like a bridge. There are three ponds on Porcupine Hollow Farm. One has a crick running through it, that is called the Frog Pond. Another is a favorite among  the  kids, it  has a slide and rope swing. In the winter you can skate on it, too. The last is the Fairy Pond. There are many stories told about this pond that are quite interesting. This pond only has water in it in the spring after the snow melts. That is when all the fairies come out. The stairway to heaven was used back when the Knowles owned the farm. When the Fat Rendering truck came they would load their barrels onto the truck by taking them up the cement stairs. The trucks would pull right up the stairs and get loaded up.  The original farm house was on the North East corner of the farm. The Zooks allowed it to be used for fire practice and was burned down in the 1980s.  The old  homestead is out just off the corner of the property. All that is left is an apple orchard,  a foundation, and a dam.   The amazing views are all around you. If you take the trail to the ridge you can see all of Central Lake,  the lake,  the school,  the farm,  and subdivision..
Porcupine Hollow Farm has had  various main functions that have changed rapidly over time.  Over 90 years this farm has been passed through four families.  Most had their own purpose for the use of the farm. Just think how much Porcupine Hollow Farm could change in  another 90 years.  Some one on the  farm in the  early 1970s sure liked Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer because there were bottles and cans all over the farm when Pat Hanlon bought it.
 Cunardly                                                   Maggy Hanlon
                                                           8th grade

2017 update

Nancy Ritzma in her historical section of the Antrim Review of October 5th 2017 did a nice article about Art Knowles and his meat market.