North American Barns come in many shapes and sizes. The word "barn" comes from the expression "a place for barley". A barn is an agricultural building used for storage and as a covered workplace.
As farming progressed, the barn began to house lots of other stuff... like winnowing machines, ploughs, roll-over rakes, wagons, sleighs, livestock, and the occasional raccoon.
Functions of the barn were typically twofold: Processing and storing grain on the upper level; and raising animals on the lower lever
The many styles of barn architecture found in North America reflect the diverse pools of immigrants absorbed by Canada and the United States in their early years. The North American landscape is littered with barns of varied shapes and sizes..
Older barns were built from timbers hewn from trees on the farm and built as a timber frame, although stone barns were sometimes built in areas where stone was a cheaper building material.
In the mid to late 19th century barn framing methods began to shift away from traditional timber framing to "truss framed" or "plank framed" buildings. Truss or plank framed barns reduced the number of timbers instead using dimensional lumber for the rafters, joists, and sometimes the trusses. The joints began to become bolted or nailed instead of being mortised and tenoned.
The barn was built around the threshing floor. In working structures like a barn, form derives from function
To get at the barley, or any other grain, the kernal must be separated from the husk by a process called threshing. Flailing was one reason you wanted the floor boards of the drive floor to be thick. Being able to support the animals, wagons, and carts was another reason.
The thickness of the threshing floor boards lends itself to them being used for tables, benches, etc.
End of the line
Unfortunately, due to time, weather, neglect and wind, many of Ontario's barn structures are beyond repair. While we appreciate the history and architecture of the barns, there comes a day when many barns need to be demolished for safety reasons. At this point, all possible materials that can be reused are salvaged.
This is the source of the quality reclaimed barn materials that are salvaged by barnboardstore.com. Now, the historic materials are reused, repurposed and have a new lease on life.