Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Black Barns trivia

I am so terribly awful for not posting this sooner.  I really though I would get more guesses than I did.  And was surprised no one knew the answer.  I mean Kentucky is the horse capital, right?!  Ok so the question was- Why are barns in Kentucky traditionaly black???  If you have ever driven through and around Lexington or Louiville Kentucky you would have had to notice the black barns and fences.  They stand out because there are so many and it is not the norm across america.  The reason is actually a practical one and not just for looks or maintence.



The answer is.....

Tobacco!   A HUGE crop for Kentucky is tobacco.  The black barns raise the heat inside to quicken the drying process.  Next time you drive through Kentucky and you see an old black barn that is not a horse farm look closely and you will see the big leaves hanging.  Rows and rows of them.  Now it is more of a tradition so you see horse barns, and fences that are painted black all over the Kentucky countryside but the reason that is was started was to help dry tobacco more efficeintly.

5 comments:

  1. I didn't know this!! :) Very cool!

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  2. Interesting! I wondered. Glad you posted the answer. I love the look of them, but now that I know the answer I guess horses wouldn't appreciate the extra heat :)

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  3. Yay thanks for posting!! I've never been to Kentucky and know absolutely nothing about tobacco, so I didn't know the answer. :) Very interesting.

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  4. Both the barns and fences were painted with tar pitch to help preserve them as well as help retain heat in the barns for tobacco drying. In recent years the EPA has made many farms replace their old pitch-coated fence posts, due to the chemicals leeching into the soil. But new fences are still painted with black paint to keep tradition.

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  5. Both the barns and fences were painted with tar pitch to help preserve them as well as help retain heat in the barns for tobacco drying. In recent years the EPA has made many farms replace their old pitch-coated fence posts, due to the chemicals leeching into the soil. But new fences are still painted with black paint to keep tradition.

    ReplyDelete

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