Our farm was homesteaded in 1905 and about 1913, the farmer built the barn shown in the picture, which still stands and is in use today. It is 26 feet wide and 50 feet long and is supported by four rows of 6×6 posts which have simply been dug into the ground.
The farm was sold in the early 1960s and has seen many changes over the years. Since I drove by the farm for many of my 12 years of public education, I often saw what was going on at the farm. I saw the teams of horses working the fields which were eventually replaced by a brand new John Deere “A.” The transportation on the farm was provided by a vintage ’20s model car which was one day replaced by a brand new GMC half-ton. Electric power came to the farm in 1948 and changed rural living forever.
The original owners raised Shorthorn cattle and probably shipped cream. When the farm changed hands in the early 1960s, the new owner took out the stalls, cemented the gutters and filled the barn with pigs. When we took over the farm in 1974, I again built stalls for milk cows since we shipped cream. Later these stalls were used to tie the cows while Holstein calves which had been bought, were brought to the nurse mothers. Since then I have rearranged it once again so that now there are several holding pens and a loading chute. In 1978 I removed what must have been the original cedar shingles, and covered the roof with metal sheeting. I usually store a few hundred square bales up in the loft for emergency situations and the cats find it a convenient place to make their nests and hide their young. Our old barn may be one of the oldest barns in our community which is still in use today.
– Neil Funk writes from Carman, Manitoba