Ohio barn lovers to connect in Carroll County

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Carroll County Barn Tour
This barn, owned by Todd and Kim Davis of Cattlecreek Farm, will be one of six stops on the Friends of Ohio Barns tour in Carroll County April 27. The stones that make up the barn’s foundation are so large, they defy explanations of how they could have been set into place. (Submitted photo)

CARROLLTON, Ohio — Barn experts Rudy Christian and Dan Troth have analyzed six Carroll County barns from their timber frames to stonework and they are ready to share their findings during the Friends of Ohio Barns conference in April.

“We want people to gain an new appreciation for Ohio barns and the way they were constructed. They will be educated and entertained at the same time,” said Pam Gray, president of Friends of Ohio Barns.

The conference is April 26-28 and preregistration is required for each event throughout the three-day conference.

The conference will launch April 26 from 1-4 p.m. with a Barn Detective workshop at the Algonquin Mill complex four miles south of Carrollton. Mike Mangan, manager of the mill, will lead the group around the complex.

Carroll County Barn Tour
This barn at the Algonquin Mill complex, Carrollton, Ohio, will be one of the stops during the Barn Detective workshop hosted by the Friends of Ohio Barns April 26. (Submitted photo)

The site’s buildings, which are original or relocated, include a slaughter house, barn, grist mill, one-room schoolhouse, railroad station, sawmill and a two-story log cabin. At each stop, resident experts will be available to answer questions about the building. There will also be time for participants to explore on their own.

This workshop is limited to 30 participants. The $20 registration fee will go toward a donation to the mill.

Barn tour

The next day, April 27, the Friends of Ohio Barns will continue its barn tour tradition.

“This is my fifth year, but they’ve been going on for more than 20 years,” said Alan Walters, who is a resident of Carrollton and helped organized this year’s tour sites. “I found out about the tour through the Farm and Dairy, that’s how I find out about everything I go to.”

“I’d say one of the highlights of this year’s tour is a log barn made out of virgin — really large — white oak logs. Built likely when Carrollton was first settled,” he said.

This year, the group will visit six barns in Carroll County, taking participants back in time to when the area was the western frontier. Three barn and history experts will be on the tour discussing structural elements and dating each barn.

The six barns include Don and Robin Warner’s barn, which will serve as the registration and check-in site. This barn started as Pleasant View Dairy and transitioned to equipment storage for decades and now is refurbished to be their residence.

The over 4,500 square-foot barn has new architectural details that were integrated to blend with the original structure.

Carroll County Barn Tour

These photos show the before and after of the youngest barn on the tour, now marketed as Century Farms Barn. This barn started as Pleasant View Dairy and transitioned to equipment storage for decades and now is refurbished to be their residence. The over 4,500 square-foot barn has new architectural details that were integrated to blend with the original structure. 

Another stop on the tour will be Tom and Laura Rutledge barn, on Locus Lawn Farm. It was constructed in 1854 for $110 and one cow, valued at $18. Another $5.24 was added due to cost increase, according to a ledger kept by Robert Rutledge, Tom’s great-grandfather.

Todd and Kim Davis, Cattlecreek Farm, will open their barn to the tour. The most interesting part of this barn is the stone work, Walters said.

“Besides incorporating stones so large that they defy explanation of how they could have been set into place, the stone joinery is so over-the-top that it appears the master craftsman was actually showing off.”

Lunch will be served at Mt. Pleasant United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall, built in 1835, one of the first recorded builds in Mount Pleasant.

The Carroll County Golden Age Retreat barn will also be a point of interest on the tour. The size and scale reflects a time when a county home needed to be nearly self-sufficient in producing food for the residents, according the Sesquicentennial History of the Carrollton Area, 1965.

Another barn on the tour is owned by Scott and Debbie Druhot. The barn’s interior looks much as it did when it was first constructed, with animal pens on the ground level, a threshing floor in the center of the upper level and mows for hay storage on either side of the threshing floor, and grain bins on the overhang.

“The Druhot barn might be the most unusual on the tour, built in the 1820s — that is very early for Ohio,” Gray said.

FFA Camp

Tour participants will also tour the barn at FFA Camp Muskingum. The core of this barn is the double-crib structure made of virgin timber harvested on-site. The camp will also serve as the location for the conference April 28.

The conference will be from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the new Discovery Center at the camp. Christian designed the timber frame structure where the participants will spend the day.

The conference will have an international feel, with speakers discussing different European style barns and how those timber structures made their way to the U.S., said Gray.

Doug Reed will be the keynote speaker. He has spent a lot of time overseas and has been investigating how historical events have changed the way barns have been built, she said.

Preregistration is required for all events. Visit www.friendsofohiobarns.org for more information.

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