"The highest expression of practical architecture is the American barn."
                                    Ron Ropp,  Normal, IL

HOWARD MARSHALL has been busy working on books on Missouri architecture and doing fiddle-related activities. His latest research undertaking is a book on Missouri barns. If you know of barns worthy of notice, please inform Howard at marshallh@missouri.edu. MFS member Carrie Watson-Coalier is Howard's research assistant on the project, in cooperation with Rural Missouri Magazine.

-Photographs of Missouri barns by John C. McCormack, of Yukon Oklahoma

Submit your photos of Missouri barns and other rural, folk or vernacular architecture as attachments. (preferred formats .jpg, .bmp and .gif).

Looking north from Hwy 36, between Clarence and Macon; dilapidation exposes details of construction.
photo © 2001 Adam Brooke Davis.


Photographed from Highway 36, West of Macon, by Leo Ginther [leoeg@jagtec.net]



The house Bill and Lura Chambers first lived in, at Drynob, Missouri, with its barn. They acquired the land from Lura’s parents, George and Susan (Honssinger) James.  Their first nine children were born in their Drynob home, including Grandpa Truman. In the photo are Nora (Rich), Colin, and Jerry Chambers (picture taken in 1947).

The entrance to this property is privately owned and is at Trailing Vine Lane, which is off of Highway 32. Bill and Lura’s home was located on over 125 acres of farmland on the Osage River. Most of this land was sold to Lura’s sister and her husband, John R. and Quillana (James) Wrinkle, who owned the adjoining farm, on October 18, 1917.

Images courtesy of Charlene Chambers  California; visit her Missouri Cousins Website at

Highway 6, approaching Novinger

above, and below: highway 63, north of Macon, looking west.


Highway 36 west of Chillicothe, looking north

Some links for the study of barns and barn-styles:

Barn Styles

A feature article from the TSU Index on the 1913 Round Barn near Kirsville

Barn Again! A guide to preservation from Agriculture Online

Taking care of your old barn (advice from the state of Vermont, but we think it travels well)

Some bibliography, from The Barn Journal:
Babcock, Richard W., Stevens, Lauren R. Old Barns in the New World, Reconstructing History.  Berkshire House Publishers: Lee, MA. 1996, 191 pp.

Berg, Donald J. AIA. American Country Building Design. Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.: NY. 1997, 160 pp.

Berg, Donald J. Barns and Backbuildings. 1998, 96 pp. Price $9.95. Publisher: Donald J. Berg, AIA, Box 698, Rockville Centre, NY 11571-0689, djberg@aol.com

Bouland, Heber. Barns Across America. American Society of Agricultural Engineers: St. Joseph, MI. 1998, 144 pp.

Caravan, Jill. American Barns, A Pictorial History. Todri Productions Limited: NY. 1995, 80 pp

Leffingwell, Randy, The American Barn. Motorbooks International Publishers & Wholesalers: Osceola, WI. 1997, 192 pp.

Noble, Allen and Cleek, Richard. The Old Barn Book, A Field Guide to North American Barns & Other Farm Structures. Rutgers University Press: New Brunswick, NJ. 1995, 222 pp.

Sloane, Eric. An Age of Barns - An Illustrated Review of Classic Barn Styles and Construction. Voyageur Press, Stillwater, MN 55082. 2001 (a classic book out of print for 20 years), 96 pp.
Contact 800.888.9653, books@voyageurpress.com, or www.voyageurpress.com. $16.95 plus handling

Zelner, Emily, Editor. Barns. Michael Friedman, NY, 212.685.6610, 1999. Introduction by Charles Leik. Amazon.com listing.