Connecting Land, Animal, & Alchemy
The Two Sisters Story
Although born in South Dakota and raised in northwest Iowa, Monica and Tamra’s Vermont connections go back to the Revolutionary War when their ancestor, Josiah Pond, fought in the Battle of Bennington and, after the war, lived and died in Shoreham, Vermont. Another ancestor is a Sheldon who reportedly fought alongside George Washington and later settled Sheldon, Vermont, not far from Jeffersonville, where Two Sisters Mill & Mercantile is located.
What’s this have to do with sheep and fiber? We come from a long history of American, Irish, and English farmers who have worked with their hands to tend the land and care for its animals. Perhaps this is what caused Tamra to randomly buy Shetland sheep twin sisters (Tess and Ruby) five years ago. Now the proud owner of a flock of six, she loves washing, carding, spinning, and felting their wool. Monica carries on the propensity for needlework that our grandmother (the descendant of both Pond and Sheldon) had: Ruth was a master seamstress who designed and sewed quilts, was a perfectionist in hardanger, and could knit, crochet, needlepoint, and do most every other type of needlework imaginable. With Two Sisters Mill and Mercantile, we hope to honor the connection of land, animal, and the alchemy found in processing and creating with fiber. Through the creation of a fair and sustainable marketplace, we hope to support those who work with these very special animals and the artisans who create fiber magic.
Monica Case, OTR, MBA, has spent 34 years in health care with the majority of those years on the administrative/business side. With her roots in occupational therapy where a balance of work, self-care, and play are essential to a healthy life style, she brings a unique blend of business know-how and creativity to Two Sisters Mill & Mercantile.
Tamra J. Higgins
Tamra Higgins, M.Ed., MFA, has lived in Vermont since 1986 and in Jeffersonville since 1987. She taught in Vermont’s public schools for more than twenty years. She is a poet and the founder and vice president of Sundog Poetry Center, a nonprofit organization that supports poets and poetry throughout Vermont. Tamra is the proud caretaker of six Shetland sheep: Tess, Ruby, Pan, Bonnie, Butterscotch, and Merlin.