Most of the real work on the farm happened in the barn, in the fields, and in the house. Some of the outbuildings were so specific in purpose that they were often hastily erected and as quickly abandoned when seasons or activities changed. Others had longer lives and a bigger presence. They were spread out around the property in an almost haphazard way. A few of them I remember from childhood, but others I know only from photos.
The woodshed in the backyard of the farmhouse adjoined the old barn. Both buildings were torn down sometime in the early 1950’s I have vague memories of them, the most vivid one involving my grandmother hanging clothes on the line strung from the house to the side of the barn.
My great-grandmother Lydia recorded the origins of this woodshed. I have no idea what they did before that for wood storage. Maybe it was put into the barn, or more likely just kept in a pile close at hand. They needed large stores of wood for the two stoves in the house. Before the arrival of the tractor in 1921, the cutting, splitting, and sawing of sufficient wood was a year round on-going chore. The tractor and the woodshed were great helps for my grandfather and his workers.
Saturday, December 17, 1921 – “Cloudy most of the day. Men busy getting large stones from the ravine to lay the foundation for a shed for the wood pile.” – Lydia Jane Hall
Monday, December 19, 1921 – “Nice day. Men busy placing the stones for the woodshed.” – Lydia Jane Hall
Thursday, December 29, 1921 – “Snowing this morning, cloudy most of the day. At night the wind blew very hard, grew cold, and before morning it was down below zero. Two men worked all day in the shed and didn’t finish. Walter went home. We have quite a large shed.” – Lydia Jane Hall
Saturday, January 5, 1924 – “Clouds and sunshiny. A light snow fell during the night. The wind came up at night and much colder at bedtime. Men busy getting wood ready to saw for the two stoves – with their many chores, keeps them busy.” – Lydia Jane Hall
On Monday: Measles