Whether you're obsessing over her holiday line at Walmart or dreaming of meeting her on book tour, there's no doubt that Ree Drummond has become a staple in pop culture in the last few years. Her down-home, laid-back attitude has made fans feel at home with her on their television screens and computer monitors as her Food Network show and her blog have quite literally inspired a new generation of American cooks who make the most of what they have. However, there's something you might not know about the Drummonds.
As it turns out, Ree Drummond, the Pioneer Woman, and her family owned 433,000 acres of land in Oklahoma and Kansas, making her the 23rd largest landowner in the United States according to 2016 Land Report 100.
Surpassing Jeff Bezos of Amazon, Hearst of Hearst Communications, and even the Koch family, the Drummond family owned the land since the 1800s. The family's biography on Land Report 100 states:
Clan patriarch Frederick Drummond (1864-1913) emigrated from Scotland and married Kansas native Addie Gentner. All three of their sons became successful cattle ranchers, and their descendants oversee hundreds of thousands of acres in Oklahoma and Kansas.
The Food Network star and food blogger also receives money from the American government by renting the massive property to let wild horses and burros run free. The price? It comes out to 2 million dollars a year, coming out to a whopping $23.9 million dollars in the past ten years. One of us, she is not.
While she may live on more than a pioneer's pay, Ree Drummond provides to the community because she is the second-largest employer in her town of Pawhuska.
The Marlboro Man (her husband Ladd) and her own a restaurant and store in the Mercantile, and have plans on opening a hotel soon. They pride themselves on paying their employees a nice living wage of at least $10.15 an hour, which is about three dollars above the federal minimum.
While her story might not be as close to home as you thought, Ree Drummond will always be there with her homemade comfort meals.
This article was republished on April 23, 2020.