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Barn Raising


BARN RAISING, a colonial American building practice in which as many as one hundred people from neighboring farms would volunteer to help a family construct the frame and rafters of their barn in a single day, using pre-cut lumber. The event had practical significance, in that every new farm bolstered the prosperity of the frontier, yet it also became a social celebration that strengthened families' bonds with the community; women prepared food and men held competitions of speed and strength. Barn raisings were also held to rebuild barns after fires or other disasters. Occasionally still held in the Midwest and other rural areas, they are a cherished tradition among the Amish.


Weyer, Jim, and Dick Roberts. Red Walls, Black Hats: An Amish Barn Raising. Toledo, Ohio: Weyer International, 1988.

Connie AnnKirk

See alsoBees .

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