Friday, June 4, 2010


We got our tickets for next weekend's big 200 year county barn tour celebration. We will be ready a week from today whether we like it or not. How do we get ourselves into theses messes?

It's a beautiful place here and across the county and I guess we like to share it. We like history, we like farming, we like land, we like barns, and the barn quilt patterns made them fun to look at.
The picture of this house is probably early 1900's, horse and buggy days but the mailbox and wire corncrib fence makes it newer than you might think it is. I am just guessing here.

The work involved in this project makes you wonder when you are tired from other chores and your bones hurt. Yes, my bones hurt again today. I have to get treatment for my elbow again and get more persistant with my arthritis care.

We have tied a lot of 1800 farming practices into our tour. LuAnn took the ball with the fiber theme that was so important on a farm and to our country in that era. It was about impossible to tie the farming theme in.

I don't know what this place looked like in 1810. Settlers were moving in and clearing land slowly. The population doubled around here in that era over a short period of years so it must have been an appealing place like it still is today.

Indians were still in the area so I picture lots of trees and grasses, buckskin and long rifles. All seeding and harvesting was by hand so it was slow, methodical homestead growing. McCormick's reaper hadn't gotten here yet and even the kerosene lantern wasn't invented until 1860 so you talk about primitive. It was!

We see these picturesque restored farms and long for the pioneer days. God put me right where he wanted me in the age he wanted me to live in because I probably wouldn't have been very good in 1810. The average age here was 16 years old, not the age of farmers today of my 60 age group. It was a hard life but it was all they had. They worked for more and here we are, enjoying the fruits of their sacrifice.

Clearing trees, planting wheat seed by hand and harvesting it for staples with the Indian's corn was no easy task. Just feeding and clothing and protecting yourself was a full time job. I know the settlers of these three farms on the hill must have worked together. They had to.

This old brick house didn't come along until 1880. That is why it is 4 bricks thick with cannon ball walls because the Civil War lingered a long, long time. We are having this barn tour and the sad thing is the three biggest tools of these three farms, the huge barns that were built to store the livestock and grain are gone. They were burned down by a crazy man in the Great Depression.

The hiding place for freed slaves is still under this house. That all elvolved after this land was settled in the 1800's. Sure makes you think if you let your mind ramble with visions from old readings.

Come on over next weekend if you have the chance to. We would love to see you and talk about the days of old, not so old, but old to all of us.

Ed and LuAnn Winkle


  1. The farm house at our place was built in 1907. My family bought this place in the 1940's after their farm was turned into a military base.
    I planted for the son of the people my family purchase the farm from. It was one a very steep hillside.
    I had to laugh, they went from wet river bottom to hill farming. Wonder if that was a reaction? Of course hillsides can also be pretty wet, which I discovered after sliding a FWA 7140 and my Great Plains 1500 no-till drill sideways down a clay hillside. That was quite the ride!

  2. Interesting. I think all farm stories are pretty interesting budde. I was raised in a Civil War era house that had fallen apart by the time dad got it. I don't see how grandpa and grandma raised nine kids there. Two are left, Roy and Jane. Jane called today to inform us Uncle Bob passed away this morning...

  3. "Phenomenal writing on your blog.
    Hope the weather starts smiling on you and your crops.
    Have a wonderful weekend."

    Wow. Keep those cards and letters coming!


  4. Love those old barns. But we have nothing that old here. 200 years ago there was nothing but the occasional fur trader and nomadic tribes of natives following the buffalo herds. My grandfather built the first log cabin on this farm in 1903. About 20 years later his cousin had a big gambrel roofed barn built nearby . I still have the blueprints for it.

  5. 200 years isn't much compared to 2000 Ralph but I know what you mean. I bet there was a cabin here somewhere, I just wonder where. Near the creek, wouldn't you think?