Old Barn in Mars Hill has seen better days
           - the Phillips Barn
The farmstead was built in the late 1800’s by James L. Phillips. The log crib livestock barn is a classic 19th century Appalachian barn that pre-dates the era of tobacco in the mountains. The condition of this beloved barn had declined over several years but has been given a new purpose. Thank you to the Phillips family.
This story continues below.
More: photographs, history and character of this old barn may be found in our DataBase pages.  (Read the PDFs)
Phillips Barn Renovation Completed
A story that deserves to be retold.photo to watch video
The Appalachian Barn Alliance is so excited for the completion of the moving and reuse of the Phillips barn to the Farmers' Hands property in Mars Hill. Sebastiaan and Ariel Zijp had the barn moved 200 feet onto their 2 acre farmstead. You will not find a more lovingly recycled barn anywhere!
   Enjoy these videos that Sebastiaan prepared during the repurposing of the Phillips barn.
     Watch these and imagine what you could do with your old barn.
The Old Barn “to be preserved, and to be used as an educational tool for people to know what we are all about around here, and where we came from. That’s what this barn is to me,
a testament of where I came from. ” - Elaine Ray Thomas
Grants Alive!  More success for the ABA
   In our ongoing search to secure funding for our eventual historic farmstead on the Smith Farm in Mars Hill, we were successful with the Marion Stedman Covington Foundation, which has awarded the ABA $5,000 for the stabilization of the three barns on the property. This is the fourth win of four recent grant applications, a success rate of which we are very proud!
     First came $1,735 from the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area for historic signage for each of the three barns. Unlike the other awards, this requires a match from the ABA.
    Next came $12,000 from the Madison County Tourist Development Authority to upgrade the driveway and parking areas.
     And third was $5,000 from the Richard J. Reynolds III and Marie M. Reynolds Foundation, also to help stabilize the barns.
   To add icing on the cake, Taylor Barnhill, our researcher, discovered that he could donate an old farm truck to https://careasy.org/home, which would tow it away, then sell or auction it, and return to the Barn Alliance 70% of the profit after covering its costs.
    Drum roll, please, everyone. This transaction brought the ABA $466!
Thanks to Taylor for paving the way for another avenue of revenue!
It’s time to enjoy a barn tour! - DIY
With 80 degrees upon us and lush trees everywhere, now’s the time to take the family on an afternoon drive down memory lane and quiz yourself on how much you know about how farmers built their barns before lumber warehouses and tractor-trailers delivered the goods.
     One great example is the Barn Alliance’s, self-driving tour of Mars Hill Township See Map HERE. Several barns have been in the same family for generations. One sits on acreage received from a Revolutionary War land grant from the 18th Century; another’s ancestor donated the initial four acres on which Mars Hill College was founded in 1856; and yet another stems from descendants of Col. Lawrence Allen and Lt. Col. James Keith, the commanding Confederate officers in the infamous Shelton Laurel Massacre in Shelton Laurel in 1863.
     Use our Mars Hill database to find dozens of photos — sometimes 80, 90 or 100 of them — that capture the detail of a barn’s hand-built construction, function, roof shape, materials used in the foundation and species of wood.
     Each barn has pages of documentation, plus architectural drawings of the floor plans, loft levels, three-quarter views and cross-sections. One barn that’s especially tall is said to have held three acres’ worth of burley tobacco during the air-curing process!
Your Vehicle Can Help the ABA
Donating your old car or truck will help fund the Appalachian Barn Alliance and
the Smith Farm Homestead.
The Caravan Barn Tours are back.... 
with researcher and tour guide Taylor Barnhill
He drives his car and you follow along in your own vehicle as he tells the history of the area. There will be stops along the way and opportunities to learn up close about some beautiful farmsteads.  
Call Taylor 828-380-9336. 
More information about this and our other Tours HERE.
Did You Know                     
National Barn Day is observed annually on the second Sunday of July.  This year it is July 11.
So go do something nice for your barn - repair a hinge, fix a leaky roof or just clean out a stall, or you could take some fresh milk to the barn cats.

Tobacco & Its Influence on Early Madison Co.
Visit some rare photographs and random information from The Southern Appalachian Archives Mars Hill University. The tobacco barns that still stand today testify to the former importance of the crop.  HERE
This and lots more information can be found on our RESOURCES pages

We would like to hear your story
We would like to hear your story, past or present, about your farm.  Do you have or know of a barn that has been repurposed? We'll include it in a future Barn Lights newsletter.
Please include your name and contact information.
Send to: info@appalachianbarns.org  
 Please forward this to an interested friend.
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Appalachian Barn Alliance  •  PO Box 1441  •  Mars Hill, NC 28754-1441


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