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Winter - December 2020 
Contact us at or  828 380-9146
In This Issue:
The President's Letter
Flue-Cured Tobacco Barns Disappearing  
Virtual Farmstead Tour Soon to be Unveiled

to our inaugural online version of the ABA newsletter. We invite you to share it with your friends and contact us about a story idea that you have.
- President's Circle:
Madison County Tourism Development
- Benefactors:
Taylor Barnhill
Mike & Janet Foster
Frances Figart & John Beaudet
Sandy & Randy Franklin
Lesley King
Rob Kraft
Edie & Eric Parr
Rob Pulleyn
William Robertson &
     Gail Meadows
Ann & Farley Snell
Mike & Sandy Stevenson
Diane VanHelden
David & Willa Wyatt
- Patrons: 
Bob & Susan Adams
Joy Anders
Nancy Anders
Evelyn Anderson
Jim & Linda Barber
Kathryn Beattie
David & Sylvia Bell
Fred & Karen Buchsbaum
Larry & Genevieve Burda
David Castel
Bob Carr & Carolyn Davis
Zee & Glenn Cox
Pamela Dupuis & Bill Saupe
Rick Franck
John Graeter
Rhett & Ethel Kirkpatrick
Louise & D. Grier Martin
Susan McChesney
Sara Nichols
Mr. & Mrs. W.I. Parker
Mark & Karen Powell
Ray & Dorothy Rapp
Anne Rawson
Susan & Bill Sewell
Ann & Rick Thomason
Bobbi & Mike Tousey
Katie Wollheim
Mary Zoch
- In-Kind Business
Lunsford Festival
Madison County Arts Council
Mars Hill Retirement Center
NC Agritourism Network
NC Cooperative Extension
The News Record & Sentinel
The President's Letter
This is the time to reflect on the year as we prepare to celebrate the holidays with family. Of course, those reflections are so much different from the ones in past years. But, the challenge brought by COVID forced us to re-examine our old ways of “doing things” and the results were quite innovative. The socially distanced tours led by Taylor were highly successful, especially in the month of October when the landscape is so beautiful. The resizing of our Art Gala opened our eyes to a new venue. Even though it was not financially successful, we interacted with a new audience and that is always a positive thing.
However, my reflection has been focused on the importance of not just my personal family, but our “barn family”—all of you! We treasure our time with family and have certainly missed spending time with you at one of our events or festivals in this past year. Although we did not see you, please know that you have been in our thoughts as we think back on the good work we have accomplished in years past. Work that would not have been possible without your support. So, on behalf of the ABA Board members, I want to thank you for your donations which are needed to preserve our precious heritage.
Wishing all of you the best over the holidays and a safe year in 2021!
___________________Sandy Stevenson
2020 in Review
  • Received National Trust for Historic Preservation grant
  • Reinvented guided tours to insure safety of participants
  • Resized our Art Gala  to a smaller studio and a larger online audience
  • Reimagined Barn Day Tours into a Virtual Tour Series
  • Revitalized partnership for the Smith Farm in Mars Hill
  • Recognized by articles in The Laurel of Asheville & other magazines
Flue-Cured Tobacco Barns Disappearing  
Henry Davis flue cured
Many old-timers are familiar with burley tobacco's impact in the mountains starting in the 1920s but may be unfamiliar with the flue-cured process for bright-leaf tobacco that arrived in 1870. Few of these specialized barns have survived.
Virtual Farmstead Tour Soon to be Unveiled
Our inaugural virtual tour, spawned by COVID restrictions, will debut on YouTube, Feb. 14, "We Love Barns" day. ABA researcher Taylor Barnhill will take viewers to the historic Anderson property in Beech Glen, where James and Patty Anderson settled down after immigrating from Ireland. Among the family's treasured heirlooms is the original deed, signed with a quill by famed surveyor John Strother in 1797. Longtime owner Evelyn Anderson will address the family's history via audio.
Do you need something to do? Need to get out of the house? Pack a lunch & load the family in the car for a 1 or 2-hour tour in beautiful Madison county. Our brochures will guide you through six (6) townships as you view their historic barns. Find Brochures Here.
                         - Even during COVID
My husband and I have enjoyed several fun and interesting barn tours led by Historian Taylor Barnhill in the past couple of years. Whenever we have family or friends in town, we always try to include the barn tours as part of our schedule of things to do in the area. Everyone always has a great time and learns so much fascinating history about the area. This summer our children and grandchildren were visiting from out of state and they were excited about doing a barn tour, but we weren’t sure if that would still be possible with the Covid-19 situation. We talked to Taylor and he assured us we could do it safely. Taylor was in his vehicle and we followed him in our own car as he kept in touch along the way by speaker phone to describe things to see along the route. Once at the barn sites, you are outdoors (masked if you wish) in the fresh air, which makes it a perfect outing for this unfortunate time we are presently in. We highly recommend a “re-invented guided barn tour” with Taylor Barnhill.
- Patti Grosh and family
If you have a testimonial about an experience with us for a future newsletter, send it to Feel free to include a photo.
Presented by Taylor Barnhill is this brief history of 
our barns and how the data is collected.

Last Minute Gift Ideas
  • A Guided Tour of Madison County Barns  $45 INFO HERE
  • Barn Embroidered Ball Cap - unstructured washed cotton twill, charcoal, deck blue, ivy green, khaki and raspberry   1-size fits most. $15
  • Cutting Board, Napkin Rings, and/or Appalachian Butter Knife- handmade in Madison Co from select tobacco sticks  All very kool..... See and learn more
  • PLACE YOUR ORDER BY CALLING: (828) 380-9146
Help Us Document the Barns of Madison County
Your Support is Needed

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Appalachian Barn Alliance  •  PO Box 1441  •  Mars Hill, NC 28754-1441

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