This blog reports events and interesting tidbits from Rensselaer, Indiana and the surrounding area.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Ruins: corncrib and silo

There are the remains of an old farm near the north end of Matheson. A foundation remains of the old farm house, but more interesting are the old silo and corn crib.

I have seen the corn crib for years but had never bothered to look at it closely. I thought it was a rectangular building, but it is not. It is actually made of two circular cribs that have a roof that connects them.

The picture below shows the circular roof of one of the cribs. As I understand corn cribs, they were used for storing corn that was still on the cob. Once the modern combine became the standard way of harvesting corn, they became obsolete. This one has a concrete floor, but small trees are growing up in the gap between the two circular bins.

The old silo is made of concrete, which was a common way of constructing them. I have always associated silos with silage, which is used to feed cattle, so I guess the existence of a silo says that the farm at one time had cattle. Those with greater knowledge of old farms can correct me if I am wrong.

The years have taken their toll on this silo as its concrete has begun to flake and crumble. I wonder how many years it will be able to last before it totally disintegrates.
I have no information of who lived here in the past or when the farm was abandoned. I hope whoever owns the land will leave these old ruins stand. They are reminders of a different era of agriculture.

I took a number of pictures of these structures when winter still reigned. On one of those days there were interesting snow drifts along Matheson. Matheson is always scenic because the fields are set back from the road and, because parts of the margin are not mowed, there are a lot of different plants growing along the roadway.


flatbow said...

I remember taking late summer walks on Matheson and enjoying the multitude of mulberries growing north of the rail road tracks.

Ed said...

Those ruins were great to play in, there were (still are?) some other good ruins North of the airport and the grand daddy of them all (probably all cleaned up now) was the old college farm near where all that development now is (Fountain square or stone or whatever you guys have there now)

Anonymous said...

These are beautiful photos. We are losing much of our agriculture history. Location and dates of these photos are important.