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      During the course of the past 75 years, Knop Angus Farm has grown and evolved into a powerful force in the Angus breed. Founded in 1941 by Gene and his three brothers, Fritz, Jute and Herb. The foundation Females were purchased from Elmer Johnson of Kiron, Iowa. Our late father Fred Knop entered the Angus enterprise in 1946 and set the tone that built the Knop “Performance Plus” breeding program into an Angus dynasty. Mr. Knop knew that if this herd was to reach our lofty goals set we would need to use superior bulls either from our herd or someone else’s. At this time we looked for two things; good size and show conformation. Dad liked the show ring and used it for customer contacts, and he also like the color purple.

     Fred remained a part of the enterprise until retirement, at which time he sold his remaining herd to Gene & Colleen. Great bulls from within the herd, and some from outside, were used to build a base for the future. To mention a few, the bull of the 60’s was O’Neill Jingo Ballot 48, a Ballot of Belladrum grandson, purchased from Jim O’Neill. Five sons from the first calf crop went to the Iowa Show & Sale; three were class winners and one was the Open Class Champion. A second bull purchased from outside the herd was Taurus of Briarhill. He grew out to be a “one ton” bull and laid the foundation for the next great cross. That great cross came after the purchase of the bull for the 70’s; Jetliner 707 of Conanga. Jetliner was the bull my father always dreamed of owning.  He had a true performance pedigree, the best of Rito & Wye on the top and bottom. Our thanks to Al Conover for his phone call the day Jetliner was sold at Connelly’s annual sale. Jetliner set many records in his lifetime including: Jr. Champion Bull at the 1974 International Livestock show in Chicago, IL, reference sire for the Angus Association National Sire Evaluation Program, candidate for the 1976 Sire of the Year, ten times a Champion or Res. Champion at major shows.  Jetliner made history when he was the winner of two of the five categories measured at the Liberty Bell  Sire Evaluation Contest; sponsored by the American Association. Of the five categories measured, he won feed lot gain and carcass cutability, making him a double winner, the only bull in the contest to achieve this. He was selected by Select Sire stud in Ohio, to highlight their semen sales program. With confidence in the Rito 707 bloodline another high performance bull was produced in the KAF program, KAF Thunderbird 707. Calved in May of 1973, Thunderbird was placed in the Iowa Beef Improvement Association test at Bronson,IA.  He set a new record for the Association test with a weight per day of age of lbs. Like Jetliner 707, he was a rare Rito-Wye combination.  His adjusted weights at 205 & 365 days were 818 and 1361, respectively. Two-thirds interest and possession sold to ABS, Wisconsin in 1973. Several Jetliner sons were used in the Knop program including KAF Super Jet who later was sold for export to Argentina. Jetliner daughters built a production base that served the herd for future successful years.  A couple of the great daughters; KAF Miss Jetliner 643-100R and KAF Miss Jetliner 641-1B4.  “643” produced the 1981 Res. Champion Heifer at the National Jr. Angus Show, along with other great progeny. She sold for $15, to Riverside Angus, Hamilton, Texas, to head up their embryo program. “641”, a many times champion and a fantastic producer for the KAF program, later sold to the Drake Farms at Davis, OK., where she became a valuable donor. She was responsible for the “Empress” line developed by Oklahoma State University.

     Our next outside sire came from the Mon Reposa Angus herd located at Jerome, Idaho. Mon Reposa King 2545 was a great performance-plus herd sire.  He crossed well on the Jetliner daughters and had a very successful show career.  To mention a few championships; Reserve Champion at Kansas St. Fair, Oklahoma St. Fair, Tulsa St. Fair, and Grand Champion at Minnesota State Fair. His daughters were excellent replacement females, one producing the 1982 Grand Champion bred & owned female at the National Jr. Angus show in Nashville, Tenn. We were also honored at the 1982 show when daughter Sheryl won the National Showmanship contest, and son Dan earned his National Jr. Angus Association “Gold” award.

     At the 1978 Sir William’s Angus Farm Sale, Sir Williams Wampum was selected to carry the program to the next level.  Larger frame score was in demand and the Wampum/Jetliner cross fit the bill.  Wampum was produced by the top indexing cow in the Sir William program, a requirement for the KAF program.  Wampum did a magnificent job producing heavier weaning weights and many show winners at the national level.  The Wampum/Jetliner crosses made history at Knop Angus Farm when KAF Sundown 2123 sold for $140, in our 1982 sale.  He also produced KAF Rocky Gold, setting a record setting sale price of $30, at the 1984 Iowa Winter Expo. Rocky Gold was a flush mate to KAF Solid Gold who sold for export to Canada.

     Always searching for new performance-plus sires, a bull at the National Western Stock Show caught my eye, Crafts Lucky Strike, a high performance bull and a great champion that day.  I mated him to a Taurus of Briarhill daughter, Taurus Empress 232 and she raised a great son KAF Gold Strike.  Gold Strike was an exceptional performance calf with a 205 wt. of 831# and great conformation.  Gold Strike sold for a record price at our 1981 production sale for $150, to 12 progressive Angus programs.  He won numerous national shows and as a sire produced the Grand Champion female at the National Western Livestock Show in Denver, Colo., for Clyde Nelson, one of the owners.  Her name was Nelsons Golden Girl; she was also Grand Champion at the National Jr. Angus Show.

     1985 brought along a reduction sale at Knop Angus.  The herd was reduced in number to a more manageable level.  The strength of the cow herd remained in tack. The same principles will be adhered to, but we will use new tools available now for the first time making our goals easier to achieve.  Tools like carcass ultra sound, talk of DNA testing, embryo sexing, use of computers in sales program, embryo transfer use more regular, stricter donor selection, sales thru breed association events and more private treaty internet sales programs.

      In 1995 to increase carcass quality Bon View 1407 was used in the A-I program and a mating of 1407 and a Prompter Daughter produced KAF Country 650-11A. He was a performance plus calf with a 205 day wt. of 842# and yrl. Wt. of 1373#.  He was shown twice in his lifetime, 1996 Grand Champion Clay Co. Fair at six months of age and again at the1997 National Western Livestock Show, Denver, Colo., where he stood third to the Calf Champion & Champion in class. He was a great calving ease sire in the pasture and a great sire of show winners.  We place great emphasis on the Get of Sire class and Country was undefeated at the Iowa Winter Expo in this class, a sign of a great breeding bull.

     Several Schaff Angus Farm premier sires have been used the last couple years.  The goal of weaning 900# calves has been made easier using heavier performance bulls from this herd.  SAV Pioneer 7301 mated to Miss Blackbird 068, a Traveler 234D daughter produced KAF Pioneer 002-068;  the next high performance sire in our program.  A high 6 framed calf with a  205 day wt. of 943#, 365 day wt. of 1578#.  We will wean his first progeny this week and it looks like he will have the heaviest sire group to date at KAF.

     This outlines our breeding program and how we have approached reaching our goals set 71 years ago. This has been a family adventure from day one.  Many thanks to a great leader in my father, Fred Knop for setting such high standards. He loved the show ring and the excitement it created and the customer contact it afforded.  The excitement of winning with a high performance bull made his day and also does mine. The following are some of the winning moments we enjoyed;

JETLINER 707 OF CONANGA - Jr. Champion 1974 International Livestock Show-Twice Grand Champion at Iowa & Minnesota St. Fairs-Sire of KAF Discovery 530, Grand Champion at Iowa State Fair and numerous show in the South for Magnolia Plantation, Georgia – Sire of KAF Northern Jet 1045, Grand Champion at Cow Palace, Intermediate Champion at the National Angus Show, Des Moines, IA., Champion at Western Angus Futurity, Oregon St. Fair, Pacific International Expo, Calgary Stampede, and the Red Dear Expo. – Sire of KAF Miss Jetliner 643 & KAF Miss Jetliner 641 many time champions, and many others.

MON REPOSA KING 2545 – Champion at Minnesota St. Fair, Kansas St. Fair, Oklahoma St. Fair, Tulsa St. Fair, Paternal grand sire of the 1982 Bred & Owned National Jr. Angus Show.

SIR WILLIAMS WAMPUM – Champion at Minnesota State Fair, Calgary Stampede, Jr. Champion at Iowa St. Fair, Nebr. St. Fair, Res. Jr. Champion North American International, - Sire of KAF Sundance – Calf champion at Western States Futurity and sold for $80, – Sire of KAF Sundown, sold for $140, to a group of progressive breeders – Sire of KAF Miss Wampum 037 – Res. Champion 1981 National Jr. Angus Show, Nashville, Tenn., - plus many more champions.

KAF GOLD STRIKE – Bull Calf Champion Western States Angus Futurity, Res. Jr. Champion All American Futurity, Illinois St. Fair, Iowa St. Fair, South Dakota St. Fair – Sire of Golden Girl, Grand Champion Denver Livestock Show, open & Jr. Shows, - Sire of KAF Solid Gold & KAF Rocky Gold, record sellers & performance leaders. Sire of the Illinois State Fair 1985 Grand Champion Steer over all breed.

KNOPS DISCOVERY 530-210 – Grand Champion Bull 1997 Iowa State Fair – Sire of First Place Get-of-Sire Iowa State Fair – Sire of Knops Empress 701-532, 1997 Res. Calf Champion All-American Futurity Jr. Show – Class winner at the NAILE and the 1998 NJAS. – Sire of LR Champ 451 owned by our daughter Sheryl & husband Mark Leonard – Topped the efficiency test over 109 bulls at the Purina Sponsored Test at Hays Beef Development Center, Mt. Ayr, IA.  He won with the following stats:

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