Ohio — She is brilliant blue, and the world’s largest Longhorn Cow. Not
really a cow, but possibly more cow than anything else. Perhaps a 100%
Quasi cow! Motorists traveling Interstate 70 in southeastern Ohio at mile
marker #200 will notice a huge, brilliant blue, Texas Longhorn cow-shaped
billboard to the south of the Interstate. Although the billboard sign designed
to appear like a Texas Longhorn looks fairly large, it is actually much
larger than many motorists guess it to be. The total height is 28 feet
with 64 feet from tail tip to horn tip. The serpentine horns measure 22
feet from one tip to the other.
The Quasi Texas Longhorn was constructed
on a hill in the center of a Texas Longhorn breeding pasture owned by Dickinson
Cattle Company of Barnesville, Ohio. The cattle company moved it’s cattle
operation to Belmont County, but is not yet well known in the area for
their Texas Longhorn genetics. The huge Longhorn sign was designed to create
public awareness of this unique cattle breed now available in the northeast.
Texas Longhorn cattle in the pasture seem to be very pleased with the large
sign. They like to hang out on top of rolling hills to get the most from
the summer breeze. They also like to hang out under shade trees near by.
The shade of the sign on top of the hill makes an ideal meeting place for
the herd. As travelers cruise down I-70, the tiny image of real Longhorn
cattle standing in its’ shade make the sign look its’ true size.
owners, Joel and Chad Dickinson, developed the huge Longhorn silhouette
but not without some major problems. The long horns and tail of the sign
created unacceptable stress points when considering some of the high winds
that come during winter months. The tail was the biggest problem. The tail
hangs over 12 feet long, which requires extra support in order to sustain
itself during the high winds. The original idea was to reinforce the back
side of the tail with large sheets of steel. The next plan was to attach
guywires to hold it in place. Knowing that cattle are mischievous creatures
and would probably be scratching on the wires continually, that idea did
not fly. Finally, with a touch of realism, the support idea was abandoned
in favor of a two foot wide hinge which allows the tail to swing back and
forth when the wind blows, very much like a cow swatting flies.
70 helps connect San Francisco and Washington D.C. It’s constructed over
much of State Highway 40 which is the famous old National Road. The National
Road was one of the heavily traveled wagon roads used by settlers moving
west to make their fortune. It is estimated that over 100,000 passengers
travel I-70 through Belmont County every 24 hours.
Dickinson Cattle Company,
inc., is located north of Barnesville, Ohio, on the south side of Interstate
70. DCCI is one of the largest Texas Longhorn cattle breeding ranches in
the United States, capitalizing on consumer trends toward leaner beef.
DCCI produces Texas Longhorn breeding stock, herd sires, Texas Longhorn
Decor Products and freezer beef. The ranch
headquarters is located two miles east of the large blue billboard, one
mile south and one mile west on Muskrat Road #712.
DCCI provides hardy
Texas Longhorn genetics for cattle producers all over the United States
and some foreign countries. Joel Dickinson, resident manager of DCCI says,
“Now I-70 travelers will know where Barnesville, Ohio and reputation Texas
Longhorn cattle are located”. Barnesville is rapidly becoming known as
the Texas Longhorn center east of the Mississippi.