By Kelly Gebhardt, Pomfret School
You may have been noticing that for the past couple of months the barn in Woodstock very close to the border of Pomfret is being dismantled (taken down). According to Tim Luce, who works for Barnard Logging and Excavation, the company taking down the barn, some community members have strong feelings about the barn. “Some people come right up to me look me straight in the eye and say I am a terrible person to take the barn down,” says Luce.
The barn has been a historic building and has been admired for over 90 years. It was built in 1913 and it was bought by Jean Conklin’s father in 1929 and it became a major source of milk for the Inn. It has been in the Conklin’s family for several decades.
When interviewing Jean and Albert Conklin, they too had an opinion about the barn being razed. Mrs. Conklin states, “It’s sad to see it go but we can’t do anything about now, we are no longer the owners and once you sell it you can’t do anything to stop it.”
The barn had become a landmark and some people look at it and see it every day and now that it is gone that spot looks empty. Carol Powell living practically across from the barn and has been a neighbor to the barn for a long time. She is also is connected to the barn besides the fact that she is so close to it. “My husband worked at the barn milking dairy cows,” says Carol. But not only was the barn part of Carol’s life but also Ami Beaudoin’s and Jody Eaton’s who is a neighbor. Both feel bad for the Conklins. Jody has not been living in Pomfret as long as Mrs. Beaudoin who was born in Pomfret. “It makes me feel a sense of loss because I grew up here and it is an important piece of agricultural history,” explains Mrs. Beaudoin. She also understands why the owners are taking it down, but said she would personally try to fund enough money to keep it standing.
It is unfortunate that it is being taken down and it made citizens of Woodstock and Pomfret feel like their home, but there will be a new barn to take its place and maybe that will become a historic barn in the future. However, it seems that many people will remember the Conklin’s barn and appreciate its beauty and the fact that it was part of the community for nearly 100 years.
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