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THE WEIRS TIMES & THE COCHECO TIMES, Thursday, March 15, 2012


required excessive snow removal in the winter just to get them open. Strong winds could also tear the doors off their hinges. Doors were eventually mounted on rails in many barns (possibly inspired by railroad car designs). Eventually, new barns

were constructed to be more practical for New England winters. The main entry door was put on the gable end with a center aisle running through the length of the barn with another set of doors at the other end. So was born,

This Yankee Barn, at Rockledge Farm in New Hampton, has been under reconstruction for about fourteen months and should be ready for use this spring.

KATHY FIFE PHOTO BARN from 1 English Barns, as the

name implies, were a de- sign brought over to New England from England by original settlers. In England, barns were con- structed with their main entrances along the eaves wall. Having more snow in New England than across the Atlantic, snow and ice dumped off the roofs, eroded the entrance way and soaked the farmers as they went in and out. The doors on English

Barns were also an issue as they typically swung outwards on hinges and

Ian Blackman and Justin Perkins working on replacement timbers for the barn.


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The Yankee Barn. Many older barns have

been falling down due mostly to disuse. “Most of them don’t serve

a real purpose in today’s agricultural climate,” said Blackman. The barn at Rockledge

was in better shape than some he has seen, mostly because it was used for storage while an apple or- chard (which it was until the early 2000s). Still, being over two-hun-

dred and fifty years old, there was still a great deal

See BARN on 20

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