IOWA BARN FOUNDATION 2014 All-State Tour
Our 14th year of All-State Barn Tours
IOWA BARN FOUNDATION's 2014 All-State Barn Tour
Saturday & Sunday, September 27 & 28, 2014
Historic restored barns, throughout Iowa, were opened to the public during the Iowa Barn Foundation’s free, self-guided, all-state barn tour Saturday, September 27 and Sunday, September 28 from 8:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.
Most barns on tour have been restored with matching grants from the Iowa Barn Foundation. Other property owners received awards of distinction from the foundation for restorations they undertook themselves.
The Iowa Barn Foundation, an all-volunteer, non-profit organization founded in 1997 by a group of folks with Iowa roots, raises money from individuals, foundations, and corporations to give matching grants to property owners to restore their barns. The barns must be restored as closely as possible to original. The property owner must sign a perpetual easement when receiving a grant.
This is the only group of its kind in the country.
The purpose of the tour is to encourage barn preservation in the state, to teach young people about Iowa's rich agricultural heritage, and to renew pride in this unique heritage. Owners will discuss the barns and their histories at many stops. Visitors are expected from around the country. The effort has encouraged barn preservation throughout Iowa and beyond.
The tour is free although donations to support the foundation's work are appreciated.
NORTH WEST IOWA BARNS
Click on a photo to enlarge it or see a photo essay
Since conditions change, some photos may not show the current state of a particular barn.
Johnson barn, 4594 Vine Avenue, Sutherland (O'Brien County)- From Sutherland, travel one mile north on County Road M 12. The barn is on the northeast corner of the intersection of M12 and B 53.. Barn was built about 1920 for John Adams, a dairy farmer. It has a footprint of over 2000 square feet. Twin cupolas and horse weathervanes are original. Arched rafters had to be hoisted in place with pulleys and horse power. This allowed for access to the loft without support poles.
Lorch Mennonite barn. (A-34 (220th Street) and M-18 (White Avenue), Ocheyedan. This magnificent Mennonite barn was built in 1889 and has a distinctive overhanging side.
Ackerman barn. (One-half mile north of Ocheyedan on corner of L-58 and Highway 9.) On the Todd and Susan Ackerman farm are barn and smaller "matching" hog house built between 1915 and 1918. The barn is 84x36-feet; the hog house is 56x24-feet. At one time two Russian carpenters lived in the haymow of the hog house.
Belfrage barn, 2410 Port Neal Road, Sergeant Bluff (Woodbury County)-Take Port Neal exit off of I-29 then go "WEST" 2 miles to the first intersection. Turn right and go two miles north. Farm is on the right. Owner's great-grandfather, John Belfrage, served in the Civil War, and bought the land on which this barn stands in 1875. A carpenter named Aaron Gunderson built the barn on the land in 1910.
Conover barn, 5315 190th Street, Holstein (Ida County)-From Holstein travel 1.5 mile west on US 20. Turn south on L67 and go three miles. Turn left on 190th. It is the first place on north side of road. Barn was built around 1900 and used by C.B. Conover and his son, C.B., Jr., for their outstanding Belgian draft horses. Harry Linn, Iowa's secretary of agriculture, gave draft horse demonstrations here. (Award of Distinction).
Jensen barn, 2410 560th Avenue, Ringsted (Emmett County) -Travel one mile east of Ringsted on blacktop. Then go one-eighth mile south on P12. Barn with attached milk house was built in 1938. Track and carriage in hayloft are still used to lift hay into the barn.
Hansen Barn, 4015-340th Avenue, Ruthven. (Clay County) - Take N 18 four miles south of Ruthven. One-of-a-kind landmark corncrib, built in 1940's, holds 7000 bushels of ear corn and 4000 bushels of small grain. In middle of crib is a bucket system that transports ear corn to the top of the corncrib and releases it into multiple outlets. Grandfather of owner died when owner's father was 18 and he had to take over farm.
Ascherl barn, 4680 McKinley, Granville (O'Brien/Sioux Counties) - From Granville, go one mile east on Highway 10 and a half mile south on gravel. Barn is on east side of road. This landmark barn was built in 1914 by Mr. Diers from Germantown.
Battaglioli barn, 4819 480th Street, Granville (O'Brien County) - From Granville, take Highway 10 east two miles. Turn south on Monroe and drive two miles to 480th Street. Then travel east a quarter of a mile. This distinguished barn highlights an area.
Ferguson barn, 40415 130th Avenue, Laurens (Pocahontas County)-Barn is 3.75 miles straight north of Laurens at 40415 130th Avenue. Barn and landmark "conehead" crib were built in 1912. Elevator still works.
Clancy Barn, 1866 Marengo (Highway 4 and 7), Pomeroy (Calhoun County). Barn was built in 1948 by Leo Clancy, charter member of Charlois Association formed in 1961. He raised cattle on the farm. Click on the photo for more history.
Dreyer barn, 102 310th Street, Fenton (Kossuth County) - From the south side of Fenton, turn west on County Road B 19. Go 3/4-mile west to second place on south side of road. Barn was built in 1903 and used as dairy barn until 1944. There is a 1000-gallon wooden water storage tank in hayloft. Manure unloading system is intact.
NORTH CENTRAL IOWA BARNS
Tenold Barn, 4356 Wheelerwood Road (frontage road), Northwood. Barn is 3.5 miles south of Highway 105. Family farm and barn, built at the turn of the century, is across from what was the town of Tenold, which was on the Iowa map until 1960.
Chizek Barn, 1665 250th Street, Garner (Hancock County) Go west out of Garner on Highway 18 to US 69. Turn north for one mile on 69 and take a left on 250th St. Barn built by Albert Chizek, owner's grandfather, in 1942. It has an open loft area.
Hoarce Hendrickson Barn, 2035 490th St, Northwood (Worth County) Go east from Northwood on Highway 105 for five miles. Turn left on S56 to 490th Street. Turn east. Barn was built in 1894. Farm was purchased by owner's great-grandfather after arriving from Norway. This was one of five farms he bought - one for each son.
Haugen barn, 18446 420th Street, Leland (Winnebago County) - Go north out of Leland on US 69 to 420th Street (three miles). Turn right on 420th (gravel). It is the first place on north side. Barn was built in 1915. In 1924 Peter Haugen enlarged it using a handsaw to split the barn in two. He added to the middle.
Harvey barn, 4516 190th Street, Estherville (Emmet County)-Take Highway 9 through Gruver. Turn south on N40. Go two miles. Turn east 3/4-mile. Farm was homesteaded in 1899. Dan Harvey's great grandparents built the barn in 1927.
Yezek barn, 22881 Vine Avenue, Plymouth (Cerro Gordo County) - From Rock Falls, go one mile north on the county blacktop. Barn is on the east side of the road. This 32- x 52-foot barn with metal cupola was built in 1930 and is one of the only barns standing in the area. The barn was in vulnerable condition when the Yezeks started the restoration project.
Bennett barn, 1664 Eagle Avenue, Latimer (Franklin County) - Take I-35 to State Highway 3. Turn west on 3 and go one mile to Eagle Avenue. Turn north and go 2.5 miles. This handsome clay tile barn, with round laminated rafter roof, was built in 1950 by Henning Construction Company, Latimer, for a dairy herd. The cow stanchions had drinking cups; there is a chain lift manure carrier.
Dodd barn, 1854 40th Street, Ackley (Franklin County) - Travel four miles west of Ackley on Highway 57. Turn north on S55 for two miles to 40th Street. Go 1/2-mile west. Barn was built by Ernest Aldinger, one of three Aldinger brothers who built farms within a mile of each other.
Younker Family Heritage Farm barn, 25734 Highway 57, 3 miles east of Parkersburg, (Butler County)-Take Highway 14 north of US 20 to Highway 57 and turn east. This large (112'x30') barn has been in the same family since the barn was built in the late 1800's. Inside the barn is a 16'x24' wooden silo that was manufactured by the Indiana Silo company and was built around 1909. This landmark barn was recently lovingly restored by Eleanor Tostlebe Peterson and family. (Award of Distinction).
Welter barn, 13725 X, Avenue, Cedar Falls (Black Hawk County). Original blueprints developed by Agricultural Engineering Department, Iowa State. It was built in 1947. Working farm was purchased in 1867 by Ole Johnson and has been in the same family since.
James Michels barn, 1278 Mason Avenue, Stanley (Buchanan County)-From Hazelton, go east on C 57 for three miles to Mason Avenue. Turn south and go 3/4 miles. Barn is on the east. Redwood tongue and groove 40'x 80' barn was built in 1947 when the family started raising Angus cattle.
Rockafellow barn, 4484 Echo Avenue, St. Ansgar (Mitchell County) - Go north out of St. Ansgar on US 218 for two miles. Turn left at Echo Avenue. Beautiful bank barn, with a limestone foundation, was built in 1877 for horses and cattle. The timber was framed with wooden pegs.
NORTH EAST IOWA BARNS
Scholtes Barn, 2207 Gunder Ridge Road, Lansing (Allamakee County) - Take Highway 9 out of Waukon toward Lansing. Two miles west of Lansing turn west on Gunder Ridge Road. Go 2.5 miles. 1920s barn on beautiful site dedicated to family's sheep operations.
Lea-Oakley Barn, 2279 County Road W 42, Decorah (Winneshiek County). Native limestone Norwegian barn was built by John Johnson in 1862. Original materials are intact. Barn has a gambrel roof with wooden shingles that was probably added at a later date. Original roof would have been a gable roof.
Palmer barn, 1206 150th Street, Castalia (Winneshiek County)-From Decorah intersection of Highways 9 and 52, go east on Highway 9 for 5.8 miles to Centennial Road. Turn right on Centennial and go 8.4 miles (Centennial becomes W 46). Turn left on 150th Street. Go 1.7 miles to Palmer barn. Rock is from nearby quarry using teams and wagons. Framing of barn was oak harvested from own woodlands. Portable sawmill was brought to saw logs. Some 200-300 men came for a one day barn raising; each man given a new hammer.
Hotvedt barn, 1996 County Road A 14, west of Hesper on the state line-(Winneshiek County). John McMullens bought farm from government in 1852 for $1.25 and acre. Nearby, Mable Minnesota's steam engine days started on the farm.
Chimney Rock Ranch barn, 1245 Chimney Rock Road, Waterville, (Allamakee County) From stop light in Waukon, travel east on Elon Road (A 52) about 6.8 miles to Chimney Rock Road-T intersection. Turn right onto Chimney Rock Road and travel south. Large building is corn crib, granary, hog barn, and machine shed and was built in two parts in 1907-08. The corncrib/granary has a basement for hogs. The second part was added to the north end of the original building later that year or the next year. (Award of Distinction).
Kolsrud Barn, 1243 Gjefle Drive, Waukon (Allamakee County) - From intersection of Highways 9 and 76, one mile south of Waukon, travel 4.7 miles east on Highway 76 toward Rossville. About 1.7 miles west of Rossville turn left on Cardinal Road (gravel). Travel l.l mile curving to the north. Turn right onto Gjefle Drive (gravel) and follow it east and northeast for half a mile to the barn.. Known as Jacob Johnson/Clark, the Kolsrud barn was built in 1870. Jacob Johnson came from Norway and purchased the barn with 80 acres in 1862. He paid $500 for the farm. Timber used in barn from his farm. Rock quarried from 100 yards from barn location. He used oxen in building the barn.
Blazek barn, 1755 Ridgeway Boulevard, Lawler (Chickasaw County) - Turn off Highway 24 into Lawler. Go north through Lawler to V46. Follow V46 three miles to farm. Distinguished large barn had a drive-through center where teams of horses pulled and unloaded full loads of hay. Barn dances were held in mow in early 1900s.
Buckley barn, 12178 200th St, Elma (Howard County). From Elma take 272 east to US 63 and turn south for one mile. Turn west and go two miles to 200th Street. Barn was built in 1915 on land given to family by President Buchanan.
WEST CENTRAL IOWA BARNS
Finken barn, 3005 335th Street, Logan (Harrison County) - Take I-80 west to I-680. Proceed west to Exit 21 which is L 34 (Beebeetown). Turn east (F 66) for 1.5 miles. Land has been in family since 1892; barn was built in 1917. Roof has laminated rafters which were raised into place with gin pole and horses. Each rafter is five boards thick bolted together and cut in curved shape. Barn was in tear-down condition when it was restored.
Ellis barn, 2370 Fletcher Avenue, Lytton (Calhoun County)-The barn is three miles east and 2.5 miles north of Lytton. Landmark red barn, used to raise Red Rock Arabians, is called the "big red barn" by locals. It was built in 1918 and is 40 feet high to the eaves. It has 3x12-inch timbers.
Renze barn, 22695 Highway 71, Carroll (Carroll County) -Three miles west of Carroll. Farm was known as "Old Mattes Place." Interesting barn.
Wooster barn, 2435 2100th Street, Manning (Shelby County). From Irwin, take the highway east five miles; turn north on gravel for one mile and turn east for 3/4-miles. From Manning, go seven miles south on Airport Road on the west side of town. Turn west for 1.75 miles. Mr. Wooster's grandfather built this barn in 1896. It has always been used in the family farming operation and still is.
Sextro Crib, 12708 280th St, Manning (Carroll County)- From Carroll, eight miles west on Highway 30; nine miles south on M68, one-fourth miles west. Landmark corn crib was built early 1900s. One of the oldest cribs in the area.
Heflin barn, 837 Orange Road, Harlan (Shelby County) - From the intersection of US 59 and State 44, go four miles east on 44 to Orange road. Then go one and a fourth mile south. Farm is on the east side of the road. Once there were several of these unique barns in the area, but this is the only one remaining. The barn, built in 1901, is 40x36 feet. It has been used by four generations of Heflins.
Hinderaker barn, 2698 Jaguar Trail, Guthrie Center (Guthrie County) - From Guthrie Center, go west on Highway 44 for three miles. Turn left on Jaguar and go 4.5 miles south. The original barn was built at the turn of the century. It burned down in 1931, and the present barn was built.
Caltrider barn, 3016 Juniper, Casey (Guthrie County) - Exit I-80 at Casey and take Whitepole Road to Highway 25. Turn north for three miles to 310th . Turn left, and go four miles west to Juniper Avenue. Farm is 3/4-mile north on east side of road. Farm has been in same family since 1883. Simple barn was built in 1917.
Redman barn, 2034 205th Avenue, Osceola (Clarke County) - From I-35, take US 34 west 2.5 miles. Barn was built in 1916 and has been owned by two different families.
CENTRAL IOWA BARNS
Hamann barn, 21461 240th Street, Grundy Center (Grundy County)- On Highway 175 just west of Highway 14. This distinguished landmark barn was built in 1907 and served for years as the Worthwhile Frost Dairy Farm. It has dowel or wooden pin type construction on the upper beams and cross members. It has post and beam construction. The silo was constructed after the top window and roofed structure were completed.
Hayward barn, 1520 Hwy V37, Dysart (Tama County) 3.5 miles north of Dysart on Hwy V37. Owner’s great-grandfather, Charles Hayward, purchased farm in 1881. Barn, built in 1916, is 66 feet in diameter. May have been constructed by Johnston Brothers Clay Works, Ft. Dodge because of size of clay bricks used. Was in tough shape after a tornado, but owner, at great effort, recently restored it.
Klousia barn, 1766 165th St., Hampton (Franklin County) - At the intersection of Highways 65 and 3 in Hampton, turn east for two miles. Then travel north for two miles and finally west a fourth mile to the barn. The barn of peg construction is on a hill on a gorgeous farmstead. The owner copied a Wisconsin dairy barn when he built it in 1888. The barn was proudly placed on the most prominent position on the farm.
Oakdale Farm/Grave of Farceur, 787 210th Street, (Boone County)- Take old Highway 30 to Ogden and turn north on P70 for one mile to 210th Street. Turn right to 787. The barn is on the left side of the road. The barn, where Farceur, the world-famous Belgian was buried in 1921, is one of Iowa's hidden treasures. C.G. Good bought 12-year-old Farceur, the San Francisco World's Fair champion, for $47,000 in 1915. The horse was a service stud, and, to this day, Farceur's name is on pedigrees of Belgians. Following a European custom, Good buried the horse in the stall of the stud barn-standing up.
Thurmond-Adams barn, South edge of Williams (Hamilton County) - From D 25 (Old 30) south of Williams, turn north on R 75. Turn right on 4th, right on Spruce, and right on Evergreen. Owner recently inherited old tongue and groove barn (36 x 63 feet), with two-inch vertical siding, and two acres from his uncle. He has made the once sad-looking structure a Williams landmark. (Award of Distinction).
Sparks barn, 15737 E. Avenue, Alden (Hardin County) - Take Alden/Buckeye exit off US 20. Go north to D25. Go west to Avenue. E. G. Herman, 1923, Dubuque, is painted on west inside wall of this very large barn.
Handsaker barn, 65627 200th, Fernald (Story County) - Barn is immediately southeast of Fernald which is off E 29 west of U.S. 65, north of Colo. Large, unique 1875 square barn is on farm purchased by Handsakers in 1853. Family gave land for Fernald.
Twedt barn, 63645 160th Street, Nevada (Story County) From junction of E14 (Old Highway 30) and S14 in Nevada, turn north and go six miles to 160th Street. Turn east for 1.5 miles. This barn has 40 two-ply laminate rafters to support its rounded roof so the hayloft is free of posts and beams. Farm was once owned by Hoyt Sherman, brother of the Civil War general. This is an example of how a small barn can highlight a farm.
Pfantz Barn, 210 4th Avenue NE., State Center (Marshall County) - From US 30, go into State Center. Fourth Street is on north side of railroad tracks. Barn is behind Victorian house. Unique horse barn was built in 1902 for Craig Pfantz's great-grandfather, well-known horse broker. The barn has such unique features as handmade screens and a milk cellar. Note the balloon rafters.
Buck barn, 1271 285th Street, State Center (Marshall County - From State Center, go west one mile to Cooper Avenue. Go 4.5 miles south to 285th Street. Turn left on gravel. Barn is at first place on left. Barn is an example of how a potential tear-down can be turned into a jewel. It has a wonderful cupola.
Dobbin round barn, 2551 Brown Avenue, State Center (Marshall County) - From State Center, go west one mile to Cooper Avenue, and turn south. Turn right (west) onto 255th St, then left onto Brown Ave 1917 barn was a pre-cut structure designed and made to order by Gordon Van Tine, Davenport, for $6000. Carpenters like Ike Ingersol and Amos Thompson assembled the numbered pieces into the 65-foot diameter barn with silo in the middle. (Award of Distinction).
Boriskey Barn, 2115 230th Street, Marshalltown (Marshall County) - At intersection of Highways 30 and 330, go north on 330 1.3 miles and turn left onto short gravel drive that crosses to county road E41 (230th Street). Turn left again (west) and go 0.7 miles. Barn is on the right (north). Barn known as "long horse barn on 30" was manufactured by Super Structures, Albert Lea, and built in 1958. Native lumber in horse stalls.
From the owners -- "We will be limited in what we can show this year due to damage from a destructive storm Sunday night (Aug 31). Richards barn, 2201 R, Jamaica, (Greene County)-Barn is 2.5 miles east of Cooper or seven miles north of Jamaica on P 30, turn east for 1/2 mile to R Avenue and go 1/2 mile south to the first farm on the east side of the road. The Thornburgh Home Place shows off all of the original buildings, which have been lovingly preserved, including a 1930s milking barn with original stanchions. (Award of Distinction)
Purviance barn, 21501 H Avenue, Minburn. (Dallas County) - Take P58 (from Perry, go south at Hy-Vee corner or from Highway 44, go north) to F 31. Turn west for two miles. Turn south on H Avenue (gravel) and go 1/2 mile to first farm on west side of road. Local craftsmen built this historic family farm in 1913 for Robert Purviance, prominent Dallas County farmer. The house and two barns are original.
Kenan Barn, 2260 270th Street, Rippey (Greene County)-Go two miles north of Rippey on T 46. Then go one-fourth mile west on 270th Street. This brick barn, built in the late 1800s, has a matching corn crib. Barn has the original rope pulley and forks.
Gillespie Barn, 1257 Highway 92, Winterset 50273 Barn was built in 1874 by W.W. George. The property has been in the same family since 1870. It is located on Old Bluff Road which carried early settlers to Council Bluffs.
Hanson barn, 11590 N. 87th Av. W., Mingo (Jasper County) - At the junctions of Highways 65, 330, and 117, continue northeast on 330. Go one mile to F 17 and turn east for 0.4 of a mile to W. 122nd St. N., and turn right. Go 0.4 of a mile to 87th Av. W and turn left. The barn is a little over 0.7 of a mile on the left side of the road. Barn was built in 1907 with wood from older barn demolished by a tornado. Pegged barn was built by Elmer Haley and the Hansons.
Gary Richardson barn, 624 E. 150th St. N., Grinnell (Poweshiek County)-From Grinnell, go south three miles on #146; then go west on 410th three miles. Barn on southside. Barn was built in the mid-1940s. Much of the wood used in the interior was from wood used in clearing the land.
EAST CENTRAL IOWA BARNS
Hahn Barn, Vine Road, Dyersville (Delaware County) - Barn is on the property of the ethanol plant owned by Big River Resources. Turn off US 20 at 332nd Avenue. Turn north to four-way intersection. Continue north. At the next intersection is Vine Road. Take a left. The barn is located beyond the plant. More research is needed about this barn, but respected area legends believe it may be the oldest barn in Iowa. We should all be grateful to Big River Resources for having respect for this Iowa treasure.
Dighton barn, 3344 120th Avenue, Coggon (Delaware County)- Take paved road going west out of town for one mile to Quality Ridge Road. Turn north for 1.5 mile. Round barn on National Register was built in 1914 by Rob Kirkpatrick, grandfather of owner. It is intricate. (Adopt-a-Barn Award).
Gehlen barn, Main Street, St. Donatus (Jackson County) This magnificent three-story limestone barn, one of the oldest (arguably built in 1839) in Iowa, sits in the middle of this historic Luxembourgish village. (Award of Distinction)
Kaufman Barn, 6206 291st Street (Streff Road), St. Donatus (Jackson County) - From St. Donatus, take Highway 52 north one mile and then take a right onto 291st Street (Streff Road) and travel .7 miles. Barn is on the right. The 30x80- foot bank barn is an early Iowa barn which was recently restored. The farm was homesteaded in the 1850s. Barn has table roof, large rolling doors on a track, entirely constructed from wood. A dirt floor remains with its original milk stanchions, horse stalls, long beam construction. The haymow door slides down the front of the barn on a track suspended by two large counter weights. Two log structures and a stone house are on the property.
Michels barn, 39016 308th Street, Bellevue (Jackson County) - Go three miles north of Bellevue on Highway 52 and turn right onto 308th Street. Barn is at first farm on the left. The 30'x50' pegged barn was built in 1926 and has been in the same family for three generations. The wainscot siding used on the barn became unaffordable during the Depression years and World War II era. Glass balls in the lightning rods are the rare color of lavender. (Award of Distinction).
Steines barn, 36746 Bellevue-Cascade Road, Bellevue ( Go 1/2 mile west of Bellevue on Highway 62. Turn right on Bellevue-Cascade Road and go 1.5 miles to barn.) This simple, primitive barn was built in the early 1900s.
Delaney barn, 23477 Bellevue-Cascade Road, LeMotte (Jackson County) This lovely farm is known as the Sprank farm. The large barn was built around 1900, and the smaller one in 1940. The large barn has wooden peg construction.
The DeFries Barn on the Doris and Jack Dyas Farm, 17929 232nd Avenue, Maquoketa (Jackson County) - Go north out of Andrew on Highway 62, then left on Y61- 250th Avenue (two miles) and left again on 180th St. Go 1/2 mile to first farm on left at 232nd Av. The 47 x 84-foot barn was built in 1885 by A.B. DeFries whose family settled in the area in the 1850s. It has post and beam pegged construction.
Trenkamp Barn, 893 450th Ave. Preston (Jackson County) - Take 64 east out of Preston, turn south on to 450th Ave. Pass cemetery. Barn was built by Justin Berg in 1926. Bernard and Correna Trenkamp purchased the farm in 1945 and used it for dairy and horses. When they retired in 1974, Steve and Doris purchased the farm. Steve has been restoring the barn using native lumber when possible. (Award of Distinction)
Stromeyer barn, 37647 Iron Bridge Road, Spragueville (Jackson County). Take Highway 62 north out of Maquoketa to Iron Bridge Road turnoff south of Andrew. Travel nine miles on Iron Bridge Road. The barn on the historic farm was restored by the family. A pioneer cemetery can be seen from the barn. (Award of Distinction)
Schneckloth crib, 23553 200th Avenue, Davenport (Scott County) - Exit US 61 at Exit 127. Go east on LeClaire Road three miles. Then go south on 200th a half mile. Herbert Schneckloth, prominent Iowa farmer, whose family emigrated from Germany in 1854, built the landmark round crib in 1926. Work on the 50-feet in diameter structure was done with hand tools. The foundation was dug and poured by hand using a shovel and one-third of a bag of home mix at a time. Handmade forms were used to pour the concrete. The ventilation block tile and matching solid tile were brought from Adel by train and horse-drawn wagons.
Zelle barn, 1503 Holland Street, Le Claire (Scott County) - Take #306 exit off I-80. Turn left at lights (north) and go through Le Claire. Turn left on Holland Street. Continue up hill for 1.5 miles until blacktop ends. Drive is 100 feet on right. This is a 19th century family farm with one of the few barns left in Scott County.
SOUTH WEST IOWA
Peters Barn, 19077 H Avenue, Perry - (Dallas County). From the intersection of P58 and Highway 141, Perry, go south on P 58 to 190th Street and turn right. Henry and Florence Spintig purchased farm about 1903. The main buildings on the home site were present at that time. The barn has been used for farming by the same family since 1934. The barn is interesting because it has cut out squares incorporated into the beams.
SOUTH CENTRAL IOWA BARNS
Beeler barn, 2569 140th Street, Van Meter (Madison County) - From DeSoto, go south on Highway 169. Turn east on 130th Street to stop sign. Then go south on Prairie View Avenue and finally east on 140th Street. Barn is in what was a strong German settlement. Barn was built by the Burger brothers including one who became the first county agent in Iowa.
McBroom-Hargis barn, 1218 Highway 169, Winterset (Madison County) - Barn is five miles south of I-80 (Adel, De Soto, Winterset exit). Article in Madison County paper (1884) discussed this barn, "It would be the largest barn in this part of the county." It has a wooden track, post and beam, pegs and was designed by I.F. Carter of De Soto.
Oswald barn, 1071 Harken Hills Drive, Osceola (Clarke County)-Take Highway 34 through Osceola; go another half mile to Harken Hills Drive on the south side of the road. Beef barn was designed in the 1930s and can be converted into a show pavilion to seat over 700. Pure-bred Angus were developed there by Dr. C.R. Harken, Osceola physician. Farm was operated with view of helping small producer market his animals. J.C. Penney often visited the farm.
The Vandewater barn (Meadow Brook Farm), 3100 270th Street, Orient, (Adair County) is southeast of Greenfield. This barn is listed under SOUTHERN TIER of IOWA (below).
SOUTH EAST IOWA
Ulch barn, 4672 Sutliff Road, Solon (Johnson County) - On the north edge of Solon is a blacktop, Sutliff Road. Take it east one mile. This barn, built around 1905, is unique in that it is very primitive. The barn is used in farming.
Mulford barn, 3188 Highway 1 NE, Iowa City (Johnson County)- One mile north from Interstate 80 on Highway 1, right after you cross the Rapid Creek bridge. Farm was originally owned by Henry Felkner, prosperous miller and farmer, who bought the land in 1837. The 30x67-foot barn is considered a Civil War barn and was built between 1840 and 1870. Old battens are attached with square nails. The framing employs hewn timber posts and beams. The barn was built in a single building "campaign" making it a large barn for not having an expansion. This is an important historical barn.
Riessen barn, 1190 York Avenue, Stockton. From Old Highway 6 (F 58), one mile west of Y 40 (west of Wolcott), go south on York Avenue 1.75 miles. Second place on the right. Barn is 40x 80 and has space for 10 teams of horses on the east side of barn and 26 milk cows on the west side. Silo and silo shed were built in 1917. West addition was put on in 1961.
Schroeder barn, 2738 130th Street, Wilton (Muscatine County)-Take exit 271 off I-80 and go south five miles on Highway 38 to 130th Street. Turn left for 1/4 mile. Barn (48x50) was built in 1900 and has roof rafter haymow with haymow door and track in tact. The foundation is river rock.
Strabala barn, 1830 290th Street, Washington (Washington County)-From Washington, go south on Highway 1 for 5.5 miles. Turn west on 290th and go one-half mile. The barn is on the right. This large barn was built in the 1920's. See photos before and after restoration - click on the photo.
Murphy barn, 7606 Stony Hollow Road, Burlington (Des Moines County)-Stony Hollow Road goes off Highway 99. Primitive historic barn has horse stalls, milking area, hog house, corn crib, cattle feeding area, and hay loft. Barn is still used for agriculture. (Award of Distinction).
SOUTHERN TIER of IOWA
McCaughey barn, 2531 Highway 2 (1/2 mile west of Ramsey barn on south side of road) (Ringgold County) - From I-35, take Highway 2 west 25 miles past Lesanville Road. Howard Lesan built this large (40- x 80-foot) barn for his dairy, the first in the county. This barn was built in 1929 after a fire took an earlier one.
Ramsey barn, east of Mount Ayr on Highway 2 at Lesanville Road (Ringgold County) - From I-35, take Highway 2 west 25 miles to Lesanville Road. (Lesanville Road is five miles west of Kellerton.) Turn north on Lesanville Road and travel one-fourth mile. Solomon Lesan, one of the first settlers in the county, obtained the farm from the government in 1855. The village of Lesanville, site of the barn, has recently been restored.
Kosman barn, 10611 240th Avenue, Weldon (Decatur County) - From Osceola, take US 69 south 10 miles to Clarke-Decatur Street. Turn east and go one mile to first gravel road. Turn south. Barn is second house on the west side. Barn, built in 1907, was the scene of large barn dances. Barn has always been used for horses and cows.
Partridge barn, 28381 Lineville Road, Lineville. From I-25 go east on Highway 2 to Leon and continue another eight miles east of Leon to the intersection of County Road R 69 (Woodland Road) and Highway 2. Turn right on Woodland Road and go 5.5 miles to 252nd Street or the first road left (east) about a mile south of the old Woodland Town site and Woodland Community Church. The barn is 1/4 mile down the road on the north side. Barn (56x32) built in 1930 by William Massey who wanted the largest and fanciest barn in the area. It was built prior to the Depression, and he lost the farm. Blocks delivered by train from Lineville. From there it was 10 miles by horse and wagon. Barn is in beautiful area.
Parsons barn, 22055 Highway 1, Keosauqua (Van Buren) County)-Highway 1 south of Keosauqua Bridge at the top of the hill on the west side. This is a small, but important, Pennsylvania style barn built for practical purposes rather than tradition on a gorgeous site above a village. The National Register barn was built in 1869.
Vandewater barn (Meadow Brook Farm), 3100 270th Street, Orient, (Adair County)-Between Greenfield and Winterset, take Vinton Avenue south of Highway 92 to 270th Street. Go one mile west of Hebron Methodist Church. Barn was built by Henry Vandewater in 1911 and has been in the family since. It has notched beams, pegs, mortise and tendon joints and a memorable wooden cupola.
PHOTO: Vandewater barn (Meadow Brook Farm) Orient, Iowa (Adair County) Photo below taken by Brian Vandewater. He says. "On Memorial Day weekend, storm warnings were out...a few minutes later we got this interesting panoramic photo of clouds rolling over the barn."
Since conditions change, some photos may not show the current state of a particular barn.
Content updated 10/06/14.