Saturday, May 26, 2007

Some Rock City Barns are tough to see

hen driving down the highway, there are countless things that you can't see that used to be in plain sight of everybody. These changes aren't necessarily by design. Landscapes change. Trees are planted. Farmland ceases to be harvested. Kudzu moves in. Overgrowth is unmaintained. There are lots of things that you could see decades ago, but for various reasons are hidden today. This Rock City barn is one of them.

This is a Rock City barn

Thanks to my resources, I knew exactly where this barn was. I couldn't see it. I was driving west of Crossville, TN along highway TN68 and I passed it. I turned around here in the Grassy Cove community and could make out a small portion of that barn I was searching for. I pulled over on the shoulder and I'm not sure how anyone would see the advertisement for Rock City anymore. The barn was rather close to the street and it was located at a bend in the road with the words at eye level. Decades ago, before all the trees and overgrowth obscured the view, this was an ideal ad placement. Perhaps in the winter, when all the leaves are gone, you can still make it out.

My map showed a small street at this location. I didn't drive all this way to miss seeing it. I drove the car down a small incline onto a dirt road (using road in the loosest sense of the word.) I had come closer because now I had a clear view of the unpainted side of the barn with its rusty tin roof.

The Other side of a Rock City Barn

I really don't want to trespass on anybody's land. (for their sake, and my own - I don't want to startle a farmer and certainly don't want to be chased by a farmer with a rifle.) There was a road. It didn't look like it goes anywhere, but it's a road. There's also a fence. I can get to the other side, the painted side, by walking the road and not crossing the fence. It was worth it.

When You See Rock City, You See the Best

When You See
You See The Best

It certainly looks like this barn has been maintained. I suppose it really is visible in the winter months when there are no leaves.

On, this is designated as #RCB 42-18-02. If you compare my picture to the one here, which is three years older, it does seem as if this barn has been repainted at some point. I don't know if that photographer went further down the dirt road or could see it from the street.

In the Capps book, this is known as barn #27, the "George Kemmer" barn. Included in the book is a tiny picture taken by a Rock City barn painter after it was painted. The picture was taken from the street when there were no trees or overgrowth blocking the view.

In the Jenkins book, this is on page 149-E.
See it on a map HERE.
Lat & Lon: 35.849252oN \ -84.918357oW 1018


Blogger Meg McNeaL said...

I was just reading your blogpost.
I don't understand about the barn pictures. I have seen Rock City Barn Signs my whole life. We live in Crossville TN and it's normal to see the signs. So do people collect pictures of the barns and share them with others just for fun?
I might be able to send a few if anyone is interested.

9:51 PM, May 27, 2007  
Blogger BrentKMoore said...

If you or anyone reading this have some pictures you'd like to share, the perfect place to do so is on the "See Rock City" group on Flickr is free with a basic membership, and a group is a collection of similarly themed photos. several people have shared their rock city barn photos here.

I'd love to see them.

3:09 PM, June 10, 2007  

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