How do you know the age of these barn frames?
The primary clues that give away the original time period of a barn’s construction are the tools and construction methods used to build them. The types of tools used are known by the marks they left on the timbers. As the Industrial
Revolution of the 1800’s began to influence agriculture, changing its focus from self-sufficient homesteads to larger, agri-business farms, it likewise affected the construction of barns. Also useful, but not always available, are historical documents, oral traditions, or family histories that give a date to the building’s construction.
We also use the science of dendrochronology, that is dating by study of the growth rings in the beams. This method of dating is very precise and can give us the exact year and season the timbers were cut.