Thursday, April 27, 2017

Wire Corn Crib

The corncrib, called such because of the open sides of the structure that allow the whole husk corn to continue to dry while in storage. This created good ventilation from side to side. Corn on the ear could be dried  earlier and kept longer than shelled corn.  The corn crib was an architectural masterpiece made from wood slats and wire mesh, with cement elevated floors to keep out rodents. Corncribs were used well into the 1950's. Advances in storage, combines, picking methods, and technoligy have slowly brought these  stately outbuildings to their demise. Those that remain now stand weathered and remind us of a bygone era of shelling by hand and feeding hogs. Most corn today is shelled from the cob by machine during the harvest and then stored in grain bins. The larger corncribs, as this rectangular Amana one, has a large center space used to store wagons in the past.

Hospital Barn in Amana

The barn, built before 1900, stands on the eastern end of Amana in the Visitors Center complex facing the wire corn crib. The stately barn is constructed of sandstone and wood.  Here, the Amana farmers used to tend calves that were in need of extra care. They stayed in sheltered stalls beneath the hayloft where they were cared for daily. To the east of the barn grounds is Price Creek, creating a most beautiful setting for the complex.