Philadelphia’s oldest barn was built in the 18th century and received a $100,000 conservation grant
With the help of a $100,000 grant from the Pennsylvania History and Museum Commission, two colonial relics in Bartram Gardens in southwest Philadelphia will be preserved for many years.
The conservation grant is part of a round of funding allocated for statewide projects that will restore the roof and masonry of the Bartram Barn, the oldest barn in Philadelphia County (built in 1775), and the adjacent stables built in 1743.
Bartram Garden was founded by botanist John Bartram in 1728 and is the oldest botanical garden in North America. Its 46 acres include an 8-acre botanical garden, close to 54th Street and Lindbergh Avenue on the west bank of the Schuylkill River. The garden is a national historic landmark and home to the oldest ginkgo tree in the country.
It is believed that this two-story stone barn was mainly built by Bartram’s son, John Bartram Jr., and is an example of a “bank barn” that provides ground access from different entrances to the two floors. The narrow ventilation gaps in the stones are often mistakenly regarded as defensive posts, but this period is not known for hostilities with the indigenous peoples of the area.
Bartram Gardens curator JoeRise fry Explained the slit as follows:
The slits are mainly for ventilation-allowing air to flow around the grain and hay stored on the second floor. If the air does not move, heat will accumulate in the grains and hay, and in some cases, the heat will explode—this is called spontaneous combustion. This is usually caused by decomposition heat-any moisture in the hay or grain will start to compost, thereby generating heat. There is usually a lot of dust in the air around stored grains and hay-which is easy to ignite. Even in modern times, grain elevator explosions can happen, sometimes catastrophically.
So ventilation is to prevent fires, not mainly for smells-I have raised animals in the barn of the bank, and the smell is not that strong. Cows and horses are bedding with straw, which is changed frequently (perhaps every day), so the smell is more like sweet and dry straw.
Democratic State Rep. Joanna McClinton said: “Bartram Garden not only provides our neighbors with a safe outdoor space for our neighbors to enjoy, but it also attracts thousands of tourists to the southwest of Philadelphia each year.” Its electoral districts cover parts of Philadelphia and Delaware County. “We must continue to invest these types of funds to protect this historic landmark so that our local economy and families far and near can benefit future generations.”
Bartram Gardens has invested heavily in recent years, including $2.7 million refurbishment project And complete Bartram’s Mile on the Schuylkill River Trail.
Keystone Historic Preservation Grants provide funding to support projects that promote and protect Pennsylvania’s historical and archaeological resources.
History Committee of the Week Received 54 grants totaling US$2.3 million Statewide, including the following organizations in Philadelphia:
• Cliveden of National Trust-$24,923
• Cranaleith Spiritual Center-$11,344
• Glen Foerd Conservation Corp.-$14,266
• Historic Rittenhouse Town Inc.-$32,674
• John Bartram Association (aka Bartram Garden)-USD 100,000
• Na Omi Wood Trust Fund-$55,788
• Philadelphia Landmark Preservation Association-$18,675
• National Association of American Colonial Women in Pennsylvania-$42,315
• Third, Scots and Mariners Presbyterian Church-$100,000
• Trinity Bishop Memorial Church-$11,890
• Wagner Institute of Freedom Science-USD 25,000
“The selected projects represent the breadth of historical resources that Pennsylvanians value-from grants to the City of Erie to promote their conservation goals, to funding to support the restoration of the important architectural Thunderbird Lodge in Rose Valley, Delaware County, and To Grants PHMC Executive Director Andrea Lowery said: “Bellefonte Borough in Center County, to assist the community in continuing investment and promotion of historical preservation. “This investment ensures that the cultural memory of Pennsylvania will be preserved for future generations.” “