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bbAt one time, mills to grind grain into flour were common along the Swatara Creek and its tributaries. Eventually, because water flow became restricted, the mill races were breached to provide water for the Union Canal.
Bank barns were created by German settlers to the region that runs through parts of Schuylkill, Berks, Lebanon and Dauphin Counties. We are losing these heritage structures to fires and development. Their mammoth log beams were often hand hewn from old growth forrests. A bank ramp in the back of the barn gave access to the second floor where equipment and feed were often stored. Feed dropped through a hole in the floor to the animals below. Of course the bank also leant credibility to the bank barn designation. Another typical feature of bank barns were their cistrons to capture and store rain water from the roof. How convenient to water the animals.
Pictures in this book were taken in Lebanon County, PA. These pictures are not all inclusive. Rather, they tell the story of these two historic types of structures.