Brushed Barns of Ohio


I snatched my first glimpse of a bicentennial barn as we breezed by it freewaying north from Cincinnati. Although I’ve admired pictures of them (mostly in this paper), it felt special to see the real thing. A short time before this, I handled wooden replicas of these barns in the gift shop of the Golden Lamb Inn in Lebanon. I’m not a collector, so I’d probably only want the replica from my own Columbiana County that has a special meaning for me. They didn’t have it, and I didn’t buy one.

When I first heard there was at least one barn being painted in each of our 88 counties, I dreamed of what fun it could be touring Ohio looking for the bicentennial barns – think what other great things you could discover along the way. Lo and behold, one of my countless trips to our public library produced the next best thing (well, almost). It’s a video called Brush With History; Ohio’s Bicentennial Barns. It describes painter Scott Hagan’s five year undertaking to paint the Ohio logo on barns across the state and how it turned into what is described as a cultural phenomenon.

Celebrating our state’s birthday along with our country’s is a party worth commemorating. For a copy of the tape, phone 1-888-OHIO-200 or visit


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