Barn now serving fourth generation family
Our sturdy barn, built in 1933, is located in Granville Township of Sheridan County. The barn was built during the Depression and drought of the dirty 1930s. My grandfather, Edward Hausauer, along with neighbors, worked hard at building many big barns in the area. I once asked my grandmother what it was like in the Depression of the 1930s. Her reply was “we were so poor that we didn’t know that there was a Depression!”
My two aunts, Frieda (1920) and Edna (1921), who were the oldest of six siblings, shared stories of the building project. My dad, Albert, was 6 years old. Part of the barn was built with used lumber from a barn that had no foundation. Frieda, age 13, had the task of pulling nails from a used barn wood. Edna cooked the meals while Grandmother Lena cared for her infant son Wally (1933), plus sons Albert (1927), Arnold (1925) and Edwin (1923). After the new white barn was done, they had one barn dance in the barn’s hay loft. The Johnny Feil Band played for the celebration. Pies and doughnuts were made and sold from the south side of the lean to. Thereafter, the barn loft was filled with hay for the dairy cows. A tall cement silo was put up in 1945.
My parents, Albert and Marie, took over the farm in 1954. I have one sister, Deb Volk, and two brothers, Ed and Jim. We milked dairy cows until 1969, the year my older sister started college. The stanchions were removed and farrowing crates installed to raise pigs. When I went to college 1974, the pigs and crates were sold. The barn was converted to a calving barn for my parents’ beef herd. My father passed away in May 1985 and mother moved to town.
We, Steve and Dell Rae, moved to the farm in April 1986 and are now the fourth generation. We have four daughters, Calissa, Kayla, Ashley and Jacy, and families including eight grandchildren. We use the barn for calving season, storage, a section for horse tack, grooming horses and barn cats. Our beloved barn is a family gathering place for the grandchildren, cousins, and visitors. It is the center of activities for all social events on our farm. Our barn has been referred to the “pet barn” with memories and pictures of enjoyment!
The barn has had structural improvements over the years. Cement reinforcement on two sides, some windows were removed and a few replaced, electrical updates, the white barn was painted red in 2001, new tin roof in 2001 and new cement entrances 2011. November of 2020, the silo was taken down. We recently hand painted the barn with nine gallons of oil base paint. We rented a man lift to reach the peaks.
It is costly to maintain old buildings, but our barn is a huge asset to our working farm. Our family is proud of our strong 88-year-old red barn.