The barn destroyed in Thursday’s storm was built by Con and Wilella Wilson, parents and grandparents of the present occupants. Besides being a successful farmer and stockman, Con also practiced veterinary medicine.
My father had some fine Belgian horses and raised them for sale when farmers still depended on those gallant beasts to pull farm implements. My earliest remembrance of Mr. Wilson was when he had come to doctor some mares and colts who were down with the sleeping sickness. We girls weren’t allowed at the barn, I guess horses dying of sleeping sickness are not a pretty sight. But I caught Mr. Wilson between the barn and his car that day and invited him to dinner. He jokingly asked what we were having. I told him chocolate pudding, for even at age 4, dessert was the most important part of the meal for me! I don’t know what else we ate, but I can see him yet on the east side of the table in grandma’s big dining room, spooning in the chocolate pudding.
CONSTRUCTION ON THE WILSON BARN WAS STARTED IN 1916. The first contractor gave up after a strong wind took down some of the side walls. Another took his place and the giant structure was completed in 1918. It was built of all new lumber and was 72 ft. wide, 64 ft. long and 42 ft. high.
THIS ONCE PROUD, GLORIOUS BARN was nothing but a pile of rubble following a tornado seven miles north of Inavale last Thursday night. The clean-up crew did not find any dimension lumber in the roof which could be salvaged. Most 2×6’s looked like tooth picks.
Blue Hill Leader