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Barns 101 Lecture at Garfield Farm Museum

Campton Hills, IL-    Want to learn more about historic barns? Attend Barns 101 at Garfield Farm Museum on Sunday, September 18th at 2 pm. The lecture, given by museum staff member Dave Bauer, will provide a general overview of historic barns. 

     This is the last generation that will have known barns as part of the rural landscape. With the changes in agriculture most barns now no longer meet the demands of large machinery or the decline of livestock on the typical farm. As a result, forces of nature, consolidation of small farms into large farms, economics, and the passage of time is totally eliminating what was once such a dominate feature of the American countryside.

      The lecture will include discussions on basic barn terminology, the evolution of barn types, and the differences between modern and historic barns. The talk will also cover Garfield Farm‚s historic barns and how they fit in with Kane County's other historic rural structures.  The lecture will conclude with an optional tour of the 1842 hay and grain barn and the 1849 horse barn. 

    Over the last few years, the museum has put a lot of work into restoring the 1842 barn, its oldest existing structure. The south wall was restored and repairs were made to 168 year old cracked timbers and to upright posts damaged by a 2005 lightening strike.  Also, a new roof made from 30 inch long white oak shingles was completed. In 1842 there was still an abundance of wood so long shingles were made but by 1849 as evidenced in the museum‚s horse barn, shorter 16 inch shingles were used. More funds will be raised to continue the entire barns restoration. Interested donors should contact the farm.

    The cost for the lecture is $6 per person and refreshments will be provided. Reservations can be made by contacting the museum at (630) 584-8485 or
    Garfield Farm Museum is a 370 acre historically intact former 1840‚s prairie farmstead and teamster inn that volunteers and donors are preserving as an 1840‚s living history museum. The museum is located 5 miles west of Geneva, Illinois off ILL Route 38 on Garfield Road. 

For more information about Garfield Farm send an e-mail message to: or call 630/584-8485.