Bank barn

I’d been waiting for clear skies to photograph a century-old bank barn not far from us on the Susquehanna River floodplain. It was such a beautiful, dry, afternoon. The sun shone brightly and there was something about the movement of the clouds behind the barn and over Bald Eagle Mountain that begged me to stop. Below is a gallery which highlights this remarkable structure. Clicking any of the images will take you to a carousel view; you may move forward and back on your own. ESC will bring you back to this original post.

Shortly after publishing this post a colleague responded with a comment which I believe will be of general interest. He wrote, ” .. The Bank Barn was created and utilized by Pennsylvania Dutch settlers to North America in the 1700s. The design became so popular that the majority of barns in Pennsylvania now share this construction. For .. fans of language, the word for Bank Barn in the Pennsylvania Dutch dialect is: Scheier (Shyer).” If you have an interest in Pennsylvania Dutch check out Doug’s blog here at WordPress.

Another reader asked what a Bank Barn is … Bank Barns are known for ground level accessibility on two floors. This is achieved by siting the structure into the side of a hill or by creating an earthen ramp, as in the photo above. The lower floor is accessed from ground level on one side and walking up hill and around to the other side of the barn allows access to the upper floor.

12 thoughts on “Bank barn

  1. I’m from PA, Philly area, it is such a pretty state that most people don’t really get to see. I live in FL now and miss the beauty of the mountains and land. Thanks for your photos. Very nice.

    • Hi there … and thanks very much for the comment. I’m originally from Massachusetts and have grown to love the PA countryside. I live in a fairly rural area and don’t know that I would ever be able to go back to the ‘big’ city. Yes this part of PA is beautiful – we are right in the middle of a fairly large area of Marcellus gas shale development. We worry what this part of the state will be like in 5 or 10 years. Let’s hope it doesn’t go the way as some areas out west. Thanks again for taking the time to comment. D

        • Everyone around us has leased to drillers and to those doing seismic testing … we are the only hold outs … as Kermit once said, “It’s not easy being green.” There is a rig on the mountain behind us (2 miles away) and, from time to time, the sky glows like Mt. Doom at night. It’s scary how short-sighted folks can be. Thanks for your support. D

  2. Very nice pictures as always. One comment for the readers. The Bank Barn was created and utilized by the early PA Dutch settlers to North America in the 1700s. The design became so popular that the majority of barns in Pennsylvania now share this idea. For all you language fans, the word for Bank Barn in the PA Dutch dialect is: Scheier (Shyer).

    • Hi .. is it Dorothy? Thanks for taking the time to comment on the Barn post. I’m glad you agree that it is indeed a beautiful old thing. I drive past it on my way too and from work each day. Keeping tabs on it throughout the seasons is one of many pleasures. I see you have horses – we have two now-retired equines; both used to ride quite a bit when they were younger. Have a great day and thanks again for the comment.

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