The Iowa Barn Foundation: Helping to preserve Iowa's agricultural heritage one barn at a time.


Highway 30 Barn Tour and Picnic - 2008

Twenty five barns were featured on the Iowa Barn Foundation's Highway 30 Barn Tour and Picnic, Saturday, June 7 and Sunday, June 8, 2008. This tour stretched from river-to-river across Iowa along old Highway 30 (a.k.a. the Lincoln Highway). The barns on this free, self-guided tour were open both days between 8:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. The tour was dedicated to educating people about the importance of barn history and preservation. Many of the barn owners had interesting displays. Many rural buildings along the once-busy highway have been demolished through the years, but some remain and hold their histories, which were highlighted during the tour.

The Highway 30 picnic and barn dance, featuring the Barn Owls, was held on Saturday evening in the Community Center at the Story County Fairgrounds in Nevada, Iowa from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. The cost of the picnic and dance was $10 per person (children are $5).

Going from east to west across Highway 30, stops included:

Clinton County

Campbell Barn, 2457 Highway 30, DeWitt (Clinton County).

The Campbell barn was built in the early 1900's. Earl Campbell purchased the site in 1952 and with friends used a dragline and dynamite to dig out adjoining feed lot and a large basement. Each summer Earl and neighbors bought a load of sheep from the West. The western sheep were not familiar with corn and were turned loose in early fall to eat the foxtail and lower corn leaves prior to corn harvest. This helped farmers because there was little "trash" to plug the corn picker. A fourth generation of Campbells is farming the land.

Donahue barn

Donahue Barn, 2538 238th Street (Clinton County).

This lovely well-kept barn is just off Highway 30 between Dewitt and Grand Mound. Barn has glass bowl fire extinguishers. The farm was named for original maple grove that surrounded log cabin before barn was built. A photo of the barn is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).

Cedar County

All of the Cedar County barns are Century Farms. Keith Whitlatch, who researched these barns, noted that the 1980 Cedar County Historical Society Review had photographs and stories of 75 barns in the county. Over half of those barns are now gone. However, the out-of-print publication will be reprinted for our tour!

Merlin Hulse Barn, 1770 150th Street (Old Lincoln Highway), Clarence, Iowa (Cedar County). Directions: One mile south of "new" Highway 30.   Clydesdale horses are housed in this barn.

Forest Johnson Barn, 503 Old Lincoln Highway, Mechanicsville, Iowa (Cedar County).   This barn is on the west edge of Mechanicsville where the paved street turns to gravel.

Louise Robinson Barn, 493 Fox Avenue, Mechanicsville, Iowa (Cedar County). Directions: two miles south of Mechanicsville.

Keith and Lois Whitlatch Barn, 707 King Avenue, Stanwood, Iowa (Cedar County) Directions: King Avenue is a north/south gravel road one-half miles west of Stanwood.   The Whitlatchs raise Belgians in their barn.

Linn County

Scheer barn

Scheer Barn, 3386 73rd Street, Fairfax, Iowa (Linn County). Directions: On Highway 30 near Linn/Benton county line.

The Scheer barn was built by Mrs. Scheer's family in 1881 and was recently meticulously restored. The interior has a wooden silo. A photo of the barn, taken by Tom Ipsen, is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).

Fruehauf Barn, 16th Avenue (Highway 30), (Linn County).

This is one of three barns the Fruehauf family, who manufactured trucks, owned on Highway 30. It cost $45,000 to build the barn, silo, and milk house in 1945. The barn is brick, concrete, and steel. Even the hayloft floor is concrete. It is believed that the barn had one of the first automatic manure conveyer troughs in the country. The troughs were behind 50 milking stations. The front 70 per cent of the barn was used for milking. The barn had holding pens used for animals that had special needs.

Benton County

McGregor barn

McGregor Barn, 3271 73rd Street (Highway 30), (Benton County).

The McGregor barn is one of the remaining original barns in the area. It was built in 1883 with a limestone first story and original hand hewn pegged mortise and tenon construction. A photo of the barn is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).


Milner barn

Milner Barn, 1695 73rd Street, near Luzerne and Keystone, Iowa (Benton County).

The Milner barn was built in 1903 by Don Milner's grandfather. Neighbors turned out to see the new style barn built without the use of wooden pegs. A photo of the barn is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).

Tama County

Eastern Tama County was settled by Czech immigrants and is referred to as the Bohemian Alps. The old Lincoln Highway has many barns built in the same style by these immigrants.

Formanek barn

Formanek Barn, 2951 E 66, near Chelsea, Iowa (Tama County).

Gambrel roof barn is interesting layout with three Dutch doors on the south side. A photo of the barn is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).

Rob Formanek Barn, 2819 E 66, near Chelsea, Iowa (Tama County).   Another barn in the Formanek family.

Dvorak barn

Dvorak Barn, 2207 E66, (Tama County). Directions: West of Toledo on north side of Highway 30.

A photo of the barn is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).



Old Tama County barn

Oldest barn in Tama County, west of Toledo on north side of Highway 30 (Tama County).

This barn was the center of the tuberculosis farm set up for the Native American reservation in the 1800's. The style is unique with a low-pitched roof set into the side of the hill. Other original buildings remain. A photo of the barn is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).

Marshall County

Womack barn

Womack Barn, 2196 Lincoln Highway, (Marshall County).   This proud barn is a stunning, well-cared for landmark.

A photo of the barn, taken by Renee Kiel, is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).


Powers barn

Powers Barn, 2396 238th and Highland Acres Road, (Marshall County). Directions: Exit off Iowa Avenue (Old Highway 30) and onto Highland Acres Road. Travel north two blocks.

A photo of the barn, taken by Renee Kiel, is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).

Jackson barn

Jackson Barn, 2383 Marshalltown Boulevard, (Marshall County).

The Jackson's horse and cattle barn, bought by the Jackson family in 1964, obviously holds history.

A photo of the barn, taken by Renee Kiel, is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).

Story County

Iowa State University Horse Barn

Iowa State University Horse Barn, (Story County). Directions: From south of Ames: from Highway 30 at Ames, take Elwood Drive exit north (Elwood Drive is 3 miles west of I-35). Remain on Elwood Drive north for 2.2 miles. Elwood drive crosses South 4th, Lincoln Way, and veers west at the railroad tracks, coming directly to the horse barn parking lot.

The Iowa State University horse barn is of major architectural importance to Iowa and Iowa State. The center wing was designed by Proudfoot, Souers, and Rawson of Des Moines in the mid-1920s. The Proudfoot firm became distinguished for major buildings around Iowa and beyond. The firm designed the noteable courthouse in Wichita, Kansas. The roof is outfitted with striking metal ventilators and lighting rods. The interior of the building is largely original. The haymow covers the entire building. The two wings, designed to house animals, were built in 1923 by an unknown builder. The building was recently repaired. Many Iowa historians believe this barn should be placed on the National Register of Historic Places. A photo of the barn is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).
See the latest information and more photos.

Boone County

Good barn, where Farceur the Belgian horse is buried.

Good Barn, (Boone County), Directions: Take old Highway 30 to Ogden and turn north on P70. Go one mile north to 210th Street and 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 this barn after a sudden onset of acute indigestion 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. It took several days for several men to dig the grave. The inside of the barn, still owned by the Good family, remains as it was. A photo of the barn is shown on the right (click the photo to enlarge it).

Greene County

Greene County was the first Iowa county to gravel and pave their link of the Lincoln Highway. The longest and most original usable segment of the highway is in this county. On the east side of Grand Junction is a Lincoln Highway Interpretative Site.

McDonald Barn, 1756 F Avenue, Scranton, Iowa (Greene County). Directions: West of Jefferson; east of Scranton, take F Avenue 2.5 miles south of Old 30.

There are two historic barns on this beautiful farm. The original barn was built in 1876, but a storm blew the barn across the road in 1898. The family picked up the barn's pieces and rebuilt in 1903. The barn has 12x12-foot mortise and peg boards.

Marland Acres, 527 240th Street (E53), Scranton, Iowa (Greene County). Directions: The barn is on south side of Old Highway 30.   This weathered barn was built sometime around 1890 and was put together with wooden pegs.

Ausberger Barn, Parkland Avenue, Jefferson, Iowa (Greene County). Directions: West of Grand Junction and east of Jefferson, travel three miles north on S Avenue north to 195th Street to P Avenue which curves to Parkland.

The Ausberger barn was built in 1906 and has tenon and mortise construction. The center portion is pegged with a bridge truss system. The hay mow surrounds three sides of the barn.

Richards Barn, 2201 R Avenue (Greene County). Directions: Travel three miles south of Old 30 on Q Avenue (P30) which becomes R Avenue.

The Thornburgh Home Place shows off original buildings including a 1930's milking barn with original stanchions and drive through hay mow. The horse barn has original stalls and houses grain bins and another hay mow. The Richardses are preserving crib, machine shed, and chicken house. The original home, wash house, and cellar date to 1874.

Carroll County

Petersen Barn, Glidden, Iowa (Carroll County). Directions: One mile east of Glidden on the south side of the Highway 30.

The lovely farm features as five foot metal pig in the front yard and is sometimes referred to as "the pig farm". Three barns are used for hog production. The large barn was built in 1918; the corncrib is interesting. Three generations have farmed on this land.

Crawford County

Dunham Barn, Dunlap, Iowa (Crawford County). Directions: One mile west of Dunlap on Highway 37.

Built in 1870, the Dunham barn is considered one of the earliest brick barns in western Iowa. The bricks were fired at a kiln northwest of the barn. The walls of the barn are four bricks thick at the lower level and three bricks thick at the upper level. The 40-foot hand-hewn walnut beam in the lower level is certainly noteworthy. There is a drive-in entrance on the upper level where a farmer could drive his wagon full of hay to dump into the bins. This special barn is on the National Register.

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