Floyd Coffield 1904-1996

NV TBT 02-06-14

Advaita and Madri shared the photo and detailed story below:

Follow up on a Throwback Thursday’s picture of two young boys with oxen. Photo supplied by Judy Logsden, Floyd’s daughter.

A few weeks after arriving in New Vrndavan at the end of 1973 I was incorporated into what was then referred to as the “plough department.” Although most of the work with the horses at that time was being done by Kasyapa Das (Varsana Swami) the department was headed up by Paramananda Das.
At that time there were three teams of horses. Tom and John a beautiful team of young Belgians that Kasyapa drove, Prince and Molly a team of white horses which I was trained on and drove, and Ranchor and Saivya which were primarily a back up team.

In the next year Manonatha Das and Garga Rsi also drove the horses for brief spells. My brother in law Kholaveca Sridhar Das, was a frequent helper to all the various horse drivers. Madhava Ghosh worked closely with all aspects of the “plough department.”

Across the road from Bahulaban in a very small house just past the “new barn,” lived Floyd Coffield. At that time I believe Floyd would have been in his late sixties or seventies. Floyd Coffield was the person that sold the Bahulaban property to the community and then continued to live there in its shadow.

When I was learning about the horses on more than one occasion Paramananda Das took me out to meet with different local farmers that he had developed a rapport with. Sometimes it was in regard to buying equipment and sometimes just to learn from them. Both Paramananda Das and Kasyapa Das had not only talked very highly about Floyd Coffield and his knowledge of farming and specifically the horses but both took me over to meet with him and ask him questions at different times.

Floyd was always very generous not only with his time but also generous of spirit. It must not have been easy for an elderly man from West Virginia to understand and accept a bunch of young westerners living the lifestyle that we did but you would never have known it by how Floyd treated us.

When Floyd turned ninety years old which must now be almost twenty years ago we had just tried to start a “New Vrindavan Residents Association.” One of the first and only things we ever did before disbanding was to purchase a gift certificate of one hundred dollars to present to Floyd for his birthday. Looking back now it is something that we did for a neighbor that I think we could all be proud of. I wish we could have done more not only for Floyd but for other good neighbors such as the Bardalls.

Floyd’s daughter Judy still lives across the road and has remained a good friend to many members of the community. She presented me with the picture of Floyd and his brother and their team of oxen outside of the building which would become the temple of Sri Sri Radha Vrndavan Candra more than five decades later. I would dare to say that the picture shows two of the earliest cowherd boys of New Vrindaban dhama.

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