Content ID

329953

Ohio barn restored to its former glory

When Barb and Jim Rohl moved to the Ohio countryside, the newly married couple had a vision for their property's dilapidated barn, which was built in 1895. In its glory days, the Pennsylvania-style, four-bay barn housed dairy cows and market hogs, horse-drawn farming equipment, and plenty of hay.

KEEP THE CHARACTER

The Rohls were in a quandary as to what to do with their deteriorating barn. Eventually, they consulted with a restoration contractor who convinced them that with a reasonable investment and some patience, the barn could be restored to its original character.

Rohl barn: before

CLASSIC RED BARN BOARD

Today, the building features barn-red board-and-batten siding, a standing-seam galvanized metal roof, a charming cupola, and contrasting white windows and louvers.

Rohl barn: side view with silo

OLD-SCHOOL TOOLS

The process began when master craftsman and restoration expert Jim Wilson of Wilson Historical Concepts began single-handedly restoring the structure using period tools and Early American construction techniques.

Rohl barn: Jim Wilson

SALVAGED MATERIALS

Wilson addressed the framing. He salvaged existing timbers and recreated other hand-hewn timbers and floor joists. For the roof, he stripped the metal and cedar shingles, repaired rafters, and added a standing-seam roof of galvanized metal.

Rohl barn: timbers

VIEW TO THE SKY

Missing for years, the barn's original cupola was replaced with one designed and stick-built based on nearby barns' cupolas. Previously installed to aid in drying freshly harvested hay, the new cupola provides a handsome accent to the Rohls' barn.

Rohl barn: cupola

DOORS TO THE PAST

Wilson custom-finished the exterior features and interior trim. The barn's two main doors, each 7' x 14', were re-created and hung on hand-forged strap hinges. In addition, Wilson outfitted them with a traditional 19th-century locking system.

Rohl barn: doors

FINAL TOUCHES

To finish the exterior, Wilson brush-painted the siding with a linseed oil, applied a water-based paint in a classic red, and trimmed the structure in white.

Rohl barn: side view

CATWALK

For the interior, Wilson connected the east and west haymows with a catwalk and surrounding stair rail with hand-cut balusters.

Rohl barn: catwalk

CLASSIC CONSTRUCTION

The staircase to the lower level features hand-cut mortise-and-tenon joinery.

Rohl barn: mortise-and-tenon joinery

DANCE HALL

The Rohls now enjoy their barn for hosting events, including parties and dinners with friends.

Rohl barn: dance hall

MESSAGE TO THE FUTURE

With the 8-year renovation complete, Jim and Barb Rohl's final step was to place a Mason jar time capsule in a space in a wall for a future generation to find one day.

Rohl barn: Jim and Barb

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