Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A Practically Perfect Circle

This octagonal barn located on County Road 250 North in Shipshewana, Indiana was built by Menno S. Yoder in 1908. Yoder had hoped to sell the design of this 12-sided concrete barn to farmers.

He was not a success at that, but the barn is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is the only one of its kind. Its historic significance is one of architecture and engineering and it's the only polygonal barn in Indiana that is constructed of a material other than wood.

From a form created by the United States Department of the Interior National Park Service, who documented property of historical significance is this: "Along with the evolution of the science of agriculture and the corresponding improvements in farming practices, innovations have occurred in farm buildings that have aided farmers. One such innovation was the round/polygonal barn. With 219 round and polygonal barns being built in the state from 1874 to 1936, Indiana may deserve the distinction of having more round and polygonal barns than any other state in the Union."

And according to Orson Squire Fowler, of Fishkill, New York who began a campaign in the 1850's to inform people of the virtues of octagonal buildings, he felt "...the beauty and versatility of the form would transcend to every aspect of the built environment..." He proclaimed that "the circle was nature's perfection and the octagon approached the perfection of the circle in a practical way."

Not only was today a perfectly crisp day, but the sun was out long enough (before the snow came) to allow me to get this shot. And thank you Mr. Amish Man for driving by at the most opportune moment.

The name painted on the barn, Brown Swiss Dairy, refers to a kind of cow. According to the Brown Swiss Association, "Brown Swiss cattle are noted for their dairy strength, and outstanding feet and legs....the cattle enjoy a reputation for their longevity, and ability to produce large volumes of milk and reproduce longer than cattle of other breeds...the milk of the Brown Swiss cow is coveted by cheese makers. Brown Swiss breeders benefit from the best fat-to-protein ratio of any of the dairy breeds for the production of most cheeses. For this reason, many times Brown Swiss producers receive more for 100 pounds of their milk than milk producers of other breeds."

How now brown cow...

Got milk?

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
My Frozen Kentucky Home
On Tour And Collecting Paper As We Go
Finding Your Way
Trivia From The First Tsar Of Russia

1 comment:

Gil said...

The silo looks like the "Leaning tower of Pisa", unless it is an optical illusion!