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Barns symbolize Iowa farm history

By Staff | Nov 19, 2010

Iowa’s rural landscape has changed dramatically as farming has become less labor intensive in the last century.

There was a time when the countryside was filled with the assorted buildings needed in the farm economy. Today’s larger farms have far fewer structures.

If there is one structure, however, that has always symbolized farm life, it is the barn.

This issue of Farm News includes a special supplement titled “Barns of Iowa.”

Featured are the stories of 33 barns that were gathered from those who love them by the Farm News staff. It will become readily apparent to the reader that barns come in many shapes and sizes. The appearance, features and architectural variations reflect the era in which the barns were built and the plans their builders had for how they would be used. Many of these barns are long-serving and have changed significantly over the decades.

Many of the barns featured here have been centerpieces for a multitude of life stories. Some are inspiring. Some are humorous. Not surprisingly, many tales of growing up in rural Iowa revolve around well-remembered and much-cherished barns.

We are proud to make this important record of part of our state’s history available and hope it will prove both nostalgic and educational for readers.

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