Tuesday, January 10, 2017


Historic barn original to the old Finley property -- now known as the Finley Nature Reserve. Benton County

Deep within the bowels of old barns are stories from our past. Many of the stories are dormant but many are still active in small pieces of human memory. 

As I often travel through rural landscapes my thoughts are given over to possible events that  could have happened  in and around these rugged barns. Of course my thoughts are not created from reality. Just from possibilities.

But yet, sometimes I would I run into old timers that would tell me a story about certain barns.  

The story I remember the most happened several years ago It was told to me by a woman who lived in a large white farmhouse that had several outbuildings on her farm land. I was lost and needed some directions -- this brought me to stop and knock on her front door.  She was elderly -- answering the door with a look of sadness on her face.

I felt I was being intrusive yet she was very openly talkative. Somehow I got around to mentioning her large barn with a nice silo attached. She then asked me if I knew about the barn.  

I didn't know about the barn and told her so. So she told me the tragic story of her husband and son working in the silo about a year ago when they were overcome by methane gas. She told me they immediately passed out and fell to the bottom of the silo -- killing them both. 

Old metal type barn near Amity Oregon on 99W.

This story she was telling me was grim by any measure. I was speechless and just listened to her sad story. Was  this actually a true story? 

Her story haunted me for days until I decided to find out if the story was true. I asked around the area and and indeed found the story to be true.

Deep in the rural area along route 35 in Lane County

Not all barn stories end well.