Shafter Aaron had to find more ways to care for his family. It is fairly true that though Wall Street fell, that many in this area of the country did not feel its effects, but everyone had to find something to help out their families. For Shafter and his four sons, this was Apples. He started operations in 1938, prior to the US entering World War II as a way to bring in just a little more income for his family. Right next to his house he started construction on what would would come to be known as "Aaron's Apple House". This facility was for the whole sale and retail sale of apples and other agricultural products. All of the four children worked on the farm, which raised Chickens and apples, and at a later date would raise cattle. Throughout his life Shafter was involved throughout the Gilmer County community and in north Georgia. He regularly took his boys with him to a hardware store in Dawsonville that was owned by Bill Elliot's father. His wife, Reba, served as a lunch lady at Oakland School for over 20 years before her retirement. Shafter, served on the School Board and oversaw many different aspects and the construction of new school buildings throughout Gilmer County providing for the future of the area. Two of his sons, Jack and Mack, would be the ones to carry on the apple business and pass it on to their children. Jack added a new portion to the Aaron Family Farm, one of the larger herds of Santa Gertrudis Cattle in Georgia. He served in a leadership capacity in the North Georgia Cattlemen's Association, remained active in local politics like his father Shafter, and worked to expand the business. In the 1970's, Jack and Mack had different missions and goals for the farm, and as the two that had been taking care of the farm, went their separate ways. Jack was involved in the newly created Future Farmers of America at Ellijay High School, and passed that tradition along to his son. Mack started his own retail and wholesale enterprise just down the road, and Jack continued to operate the original, working closely with his brother trading apples, cattle and other resources. Bill Aaron still operates that enterprise to this day. Jack married Dorothy Craig and had two children, Diane Aaron and Alan Aaron. Diane went on to marry Mitchell Bowen. Diane worked in the banking industry and part time on the family farm helping with accounting, records, and number crunching. Alan married Mary Waddell and helped with the day to day operations of the farm. In 1999 Jack passed away after fighting a series of strokes. Due to the labor intensity, the cattle were sold off, but the chickens and apples both remained. Dorothy remained the matriarch of the family until she passed away from Lung Cancer in 2006. Diane and Alan partnered for several years, taking care of the operations until an offer was made and he bought out his sister's share of the business. The farm is now owned, operated, and maintained by Alan and Mary Aaron. Alan and Mary both attended Gilmer County High School. Alan started to attend Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College, but the farm required his assistance more than his studies, so he returned home and married the love of his life Mary Waddell, who was attending North Georgia College at the time, and was a very active member of the Corps of Cadets. They were married in 1987 and added 4 more chicken houses to the Aaron Family Farm. In 1990 they welcomed their first child, Stephen, then in 1996, Joshua was born, and in 1998 Sarah was the final installment of the Aaron family.
Stephen continued on the family tradition in the American FFA Association, was awarded the North Region Star in Agricultural Science, and received his American FFA Degree in 2011, the first in his family to do so. He also went on to be the first person in his family to earn a degree, receiving an Associates Degree in Political Science in 2011, and a Bachelor's in Business and Economic Development in 2013. While at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College he served as President of the Student Body, and highlighted issues on the campus. He now manages the Apple House and conducts many of the retail operations as well as advertising and marketing.
Joshua Aaron graduated from Gilmer County High School in 2014. He lettered 4 years in Football, and 3 years in Track and Field events. Another member of the National FFA Association, he served as the Secretary for the Georgia FFA Association Area 1, and graduated with honors. He is currently attending Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College and majoring in Agriculture Education.
Sarah Aaron is a basketball star and a Junior at Gilmer County High School. She not only plays for the school, but also for a travel team in order to keep her skillset up. She plans to attend college on a Basketball Scholarship and become a Physical Therapist.