Oldfields Road barn
Oldfields Road barn, South Berwick

The Old Berwick Historical Society will present the evolution of northern New England agriculture as seen through the architecture of barns. On Thursday, April 25, author John Porter will present a chronological walk through time, with photo illustrations of New Hampshire barns that are examples of agricultural history. 

The lecture begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Commons Dining Hall at Berwick Academy in South Berwick.  Location signs will be posted.

Admission is free and open to the public. Donations are gratefully accepted.

An upcoming related exhibit at the Counting House Museum, “Our Stories: Talking about Tatnic,” examines early rural life in South Berwick. The exhibit opens in June.

Porter will speak about how barns changed from the early English style, to Yankee style, to gambrel and then pole barns to accommodate the changing agriculture. 

Porter was raised on a dairy farm in Lebanon, New Hampshire. He holds a Master’s degree from Cornell University in animal nutrition and farm management, as well as a Master of Science degree from Bob Jones University in education administration. He served as a dairy specialist for the University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension from 1974 until his retirement in 2006. He still works part-time for UNH and operates his own consulting company, Farm Planning Services, LLC.

In 2001, Porter co-authored the book Preserving Old Barns. He is a past editor and contributing author of “The History and Economics of the New Hampshire Dairy Industry,” and contributed a chapter on agriculture to a Concord history book, Crosscurrents of Change.

The Counting House Museum is currently closed for the season, though appointments can be requested. The museum is open June through October on Saturdays and Sundays from 1pm to 4pm. The Old Berwick Historical Society’s 2019 lectures are generously sponsored by Kennebunk Savings and supported by historical society members and donors. 


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