History

Steeped in tradition, Sleepy Hollow Dairy traces its roots to Sleepy Hollow Valley in northwest San Anselmo in Marin County where, in 1906, Sigfried Herzog purchased cows and equipment from Dick Hotaling and started in the dairy business.

In 1925, the Hotaling family decided to sell the ranch that was being leased by the S.K. Herzog Corporation. When Sig thought the asking price was too high, he began looking for a new dairy property. After looking in both Marin and Sonoma Counties, he settled on land located four miles south of the community of Lakeville. In those days, a bend in the Petaluma River called “False Bay” was an important Stage Station, Steamer and early shipping port for farms located along the east bank of the river.

So, on September 30, 1926, Sig purchased approximately 2,200 acres from the Rose Land Company and began to draw up plans for his new dairy complex. In 1926, Lakeville Highway was a dirt and gravel road that essentially ended where the new dairy facility was being constructed. When Sig Herzog approached the County to ask that the road be improved, they agreed and seeing the potential for growth in the area, paved the road clear through to Highway 37. When the new dairy was completed in 1928, over 250 head of cattle had been driven from the San Anselmo Ranch across the Petaluma River to the Lakeville Ranch by horses and dogs.


Read the complete history of the Herzog Family & Sleepy Hollow Dairy


A second barn and milking set-up known as the Blackpoint Dairy was built along Highway 37 and continued in operation until 1970 when all the cows were moved to Lakeville Highway location. Sigfried’s son Max was assistant manager of the dairy until long-time employee and Manager Porter H. Davis retired in 1937, when Max took over management duties.

After graduating from UC Davis Max’s son Max Jr. (Kip) became a partner in the dairy operation in 1961 where the father-son duo continued to develop one of the most recognized herd names in the United States as well as the world. In addition, the implementation of new ideas that were being promoted by The University of California Cooperative Extension led to a more profitable business. 

For the next 39 years, he along with his wife Marilyn oversaw the continued development and success of Sleepy Hollow Dairy with many awards and recognition along the way. In October 1979, Max and Kip received the Dairy Shrine Distinguished Dairy Cattle Breeders Award. In 1985, Kip received the California Holstein Association’s Senior Breeder Award and in 1993 the College of Agriculture and Environmental Science Award for Distinction at the University of California, Davis. The Dairy of the Year for 1996 at the Sonoma County Fair followed and in 2000, the California Chamber of Commerce selected Kip as “Livestock Man of the Year.” Presented at the Grand National Rodeo, Horse and Livestock Show at the Cow Palace in San Francisco, this was only the fifth time a Dairyman was selected for this award. Kip and Marilyn have continued to live on the ranch which now contains approximately 650 acres.


Sleepy Hollow Dairy Timeline

1926

Sig Herzog purchases 2200 acres along Lakeville Hwy and establishes the dairy.

1961

Max Herzog welcomes his son Kip as partner in the Sleepy Hollow Dairy business.

1979

Max & Kip earn Dairy Shrine Distinguished Dairy Cattle Breeders Award.

1985

Kip receives California Holstein Association’s Senior Breeder Award.

1996

Sleepy Hollow is named “Dairy of the Year” at the Sonoma County Fair.

2000

Kip named “Livestock Man of the Year” by CA Chamber of Commerce.