NEWSLETTER, May 2005
From the Editor... The week-long barn repair workshop at the Palatine Farmstead in Rhinebeck was a great success blessed by the best weather. The building was leveled and secured to new 7x9-inch white oak sill plates. A dedicated and hard working crew of instructors and participants cut the traditional scarf joint, lap dovetails and mortises in the north sill using hand tools and some modern shortcuts, rebuilt part of the dry-wall stone foundation on the north side, numbered and removed the 2-inch oak floor boards, dug out the accumulation of dirt bellow the floor exposing the internal sills and installed temporary longitudinal braces.
The project was funded by gifts of $1,000 each from HVVA and the Dutch Barn Preservation Society, fees and contributions added $1,436. Costs of $2,296 left $1,140 on hand to begin a two day workshop later in the month.
Schatzel of Hurley
This beginning of the restoration process stabilized the timber frame but there are other things that need attention before the building is fully secure. We will be treating parts of the old frame with antifungal chemicals and we have ordered new 12"x3/4" pine siding to enclose some of the barn. It is being cut on a Wood-Miser band; saw mill that will give it a vintage look of vertical saw marks as if the wood were cut: on an early sash mill. We will be planning another work session soon. (see Coming Events)
Whether the barn was original to the site or moved here remains a question. Uncovering some of the stone foundation has helped support the notion of the barn being original to the site. A date and innitials carved'on the anchorbeam of a nearby Dutch barn suggests the "MD 1770" inscribed in thEtPalatine Farmstead barn may refer to the carpenter rather than the family.
Back of the Barn, Facing Northwest
Bent 3. Facing East
The Palatine Farmstead barn . is missing its columns above the anchorbeams. Why these were removed is not clear. The original plates were reused and are in good condition, indicating the upper columns (verdiepingh) were also in good condition. Using a nearby barn as a model, The Mosher (Dut-Rhi-I8) 3-bay Dutch barn, 11 '6" wide sideaisles, rather than the more common 10-foot side aisles, are conjectured and a 5'5" column above the anchorbeam for the original Palatine Farmstead barn. There is a north side wall foundation that has not been looked at, it measures 11 '6" from the center aisle. One feature that gets in the way of our conjecture is the hill on the south side that is held back 9 feet from the nave with a 4 foot high stone wall. Does this all respresent accumulated dirt eroded from the steep hillside? There should be a dig done to uncover foundation evidence. Devan found one bottle fragment in the soil close to the stone foundation wall that he was rebuilding. It suggests an 18th century date for the foundation wall.
Preparing a sill plate.->
Wide side aisles on Dutch barns may be a Rhinebeck feature. I noted in the December 2004 newsletter, pages 4& 5 on the report of a Rhinebeck. tour of four barns, that these had side aisles of 11','10'6", 11'2" and 12' whereas the Ulster County barns on page 3. have 10' and 10 '2" aisles.
The North Side Wall, Facing South
H\I\I A MEETING Maggie MacDowell, Secretary
Saturday, May 7, Paul Spencer opened the meeting at 10:15 AM at the Marbletown Firehouse, Ulster County. 13 members attended (*). Peter reported on the 6-day Barn workshop and of the 2-day workshop planned for May 27-28 that will be lead by Bob Hedges. Paul wants to improve the web site to create the ability for people to join on line, and expressed the need we have for a Microsoft program with which we can exchange documents. We were told by the NYS Historical Association at Cooperstown, that we would have to pay for use of our present web logo, The Van Bergen Overmantle, which they own. John reported on progress being made with his book. His editor is insisting on an index. Dennis reported on his work to publish his book on Staten Island Houses. The Group car pooled and drove to Accord.
(*) Jim Decker, Robert Eureck, Nancy Ginsberg, Maggie MacDowell, Karen Markisenis, Wanda Roosa. Peter Sinclair, Paul Spencer, John and Marion Stevens, Rob Sweeney, Dennis Tierney, and George Van Sickle.
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