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Published: Saturday, 4/19/2008

Hancock park has old barn to salvage

The barn was built before 1900 and was in the same family for four generations before the park district bought the site. The barn was built before 1900 and was in the same family for four generations before the park district bought the site.

FINDLAY - Calling all old barn lovers.

The Hancock Park District is looking for people interested in salvaging the hand-hewn beams and native timber siding on a century-old barn the agency wants to tear down before it falls down.

"There is native timber from the Blanchard River Valley and a lot of it," said Tim Brugeman, park district director. "If someone was building a small building or renovating a family room and wants some beams for aesthetics, that could be a possibility."

The park district is soliciting offers for the barn, which sits along the Blanchard River and can be seen from State Rt. 568, just east of Bright Road.

The best offer may not be the most money, Mr. Brugeman said, explaining that the park district is interested in getting the site cleared.

It would like to keep much of the barn's limestone foundation to use in the parks for retaining walls, landscaping, and other projects, but hopes to find someone to take away as much of the wood as possible.

"We're just trying to find an easy way to get this barn over to somebody who can put it to good use and save some money trying to clean up the site," he said.

The agency purchased the land where the barn sits several years ago with a state grant awarded for watershed and flood plain protection. The barn is one of several owned by the park district in flood plain areas - areas the agency would like to clear and seed.

The barn was built prior to 1900 and is considered historic because of its age and the fact that it was in the same family for four generations. George Washington Kistler and his descendants, the Vogelsong family, were the only owners until the park district purchased the property.

"These old barns are well past their prime as far as the economies of maintenance - to reroof them, to repaint them. The logs are old. The siding will blow off in a windstorm," Mr. Brugeman said. "It's just sad to see that era blow away, literally."

For more information, contact the Hancock Park District, 419-425-PARK.

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