Old Barns

Old barns symbolize a vanishing way of life and Wisconsin is full of them.  I see them often and if I’m driving I sometimes give in to a “sudden leaving of the road” impulse and try to get some pictures.  I grew up on a farm with a beautiful old barn and spent many hours playing and working in the hay loft, whitewashing the walls on the ground floor, sweeping the center aisle, cleaning out the watering cups and the gutters and milking the cows stanchioned in rows along the barn’s length.  Those of us with memories like these are becoming fewer in number and soon the barns will be gone too.  The one I grew up loving started leaning back in the 70’s and finally blew over in a storm in the 80’s. 

My grandfather’s farm, which is now owned by my brother, has a barn which is still standing – probably because my grandfather was forever scaring his wife by going up to put tin on the roof.  The tin kept the wood from getting wet and rotting, and the basic structure of the barn is pretty solid.  It has beautifully weathered wood full of color and texture and the old pieces of tin make the roof look like a patchwork quilt.  It is one of our favorite backdrops for photos.  A number of them are framed in an old window that is hanging on my wall and was a subject of a previous blog post (See “Tribute to a Barn” 11/6/2012).  These are some new shots that I took this year.

On my motorcycle ride with my brother Bob (during the recent reunion) we passed another old barn that was painfully picturesque. I say painfully because I was almost afraid it might collapse while I was looking at it.  I was able to get my Dad to go back with me and find the farm, and now it will at least be preserved in photo memory.  Dad remembered the farm belonging to a pair of batchelor brothers a long time ago but it was abandoned, gated and posted. ( Don’t tell anyone I climbed through the gate to get these pics.) 

initial view from the road

especially love the doors and hinges

unusual lines even before it started leaning

if walls could talk, the stories these would tell…

rustic beauty, daisies and old wood

a barn you don’t want to spend much time in

a roof that could have used some tin…

Dad, waiting for me to quit trespassing

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