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Preserving Old Barns Through Photography

Project ensures barns won’t disappear from history

  • When picturing Ontario’s rural landscape there’s nothing more iconic than a scene of an old wooden barn perched upon a hill, surrounded by rolling fields of crops and cows grazing in the pastures. Adjala-Tosorontio is home to roughly 200 barns, but with every passing year there are fewer of them left standing. That’s why a group of residents decided to take on a new project that will preserve the area’s rich agricultural history for generations to come.
  • Tina Machado, coordinator for the Adjala-Tosorontio barn photo project, quickly became interested in photographing barns after moving to the area about a year ago. “I think barns are becoming scarce and I’m just afraid the history of the area could be lost as more people move to the area and as more houses are developed,” she said. Machado will be photographing the barns with two students from Banting Memorial High School, including Josiah Botting, who is a budding shutterbug. Farming also happens to be a big part of his family’s history.  “I visit farms all the time and my poppa still lives on a farm in Beeton,” he said.
  • Author and historian Ralph Braden will also be contributing to the project by providing background information on the farmers who built and used them. One of the barns that will be featured is owned by his brother Bill Braden, who operates Bonnie Boyne Yorkshires farm on Highway 89, just west of Industrial Parkway. “The barn is 111 years old, but the original barn was built from logs by pioneers,” he said. “The land was cleared there in the late 1840s before Alliston was founded.” Behind every barn there’s a story about the people who worked the land.
  • Once all of the photos have been taken, a committee will select up to 20 of them to be framed, and the remainder will be arranged in a large album. The photos will then be put on display at the township office in December.
BRAD PRITCHARD Alliston Herald Feb 1st

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Filed under architecture, farming, heritage barns