WV Farm Bureau Magazine August 2015 - Page 16

Although she’s painted red with white trim, this barn is not something you would normally see standing on a farm. The barn at the West Virginia Schools for the Deaf and the Blind stands tall on the outskirts of the city of Romney, and although a little timeworn, she’s still a site to be seen, inside and out. The birth of the WVSDB and the farm began in 1902 when 140 acres of land was purchased between what is now Route 28 and the South Branch Valley Railroad for $4,385.50. The huge barn, which is actually three barns in one, is owned by the WVSDB. Built in 1930, the barn housed the latest equipment and was operated by the school’s students. Standing Strong Depression-era threebarns-in-one defying the elements Marla Pisciotta 16 West Virginia Farm Bureau News Built during the depression, the cost to construct the barn was $16,662.07. Although the schools tried to get funding through the legislature, they were turned down. So, monies set aside for a rainy day fund were used to build the massive barn. Prior to the opening of the new barn, another barn existed on campus, which held about 25 head of dairy cattle, a pig sty, and chicken house. The old barn and out structures were located roughly in the vicinity of the current central supply and school greenhouse on the WVSDB campus. Once the new barn was finished, the old barn was torn down. The three barns in one had room for 60 cows and eight horses, all divided in sections and separated. Two sections measure 74 feet by 36 feet, and each are connected by a third section approximately 43 feet by 30 feet. Four pens were isolated from the rest of the herd for sick cattle. There were two bullpens and two calf pens. The central part of the upper story housed feed bins lined with galvanized iron. Two carloads of ground feed could be stored, mixed, and easily transported to feed rooms on the first floor. The loft could carry 100 tons of hay or other feed and the silo, which measured 14