Bank Barn

Station 3 iconThe bank barn’s knob-and-neck construction is typical of Howard County outbuildings from the early 20th century. Bank barns are built into the side of a hill, or bank, where both the upper and lower floors can be accessed from the ground at different levels. Although this barn was built in the early 1900s, the stone foundation is older. Many outbuildings at Mt. Pleasant burned in a fire of suspicious origin in 1902. They were rebuilt in the years that followed.  

The second level of a bank barn could also be accessed from a ramp if a hill was unavailable. The upper floor stored hay, and the lower floor housed livestock. Wagons could enter directly into the hayloft on the upper floor to deposit hay. Bank barns began to gain popularity in the 19th century and were sometimes called “basement barns.”

Newspaper article clipping

Fire in Howard County (From the Baltimore Sun, April 28, 1902)

Burning of Two Barns and Other Property Near Woodstock.

[Special Dispatch to the Baltimore Sun ]

Ellicott, City, MD., April 28. – A disastrous conflagration occurred on the farm of Mr. Frank. D. Brown at Woodstock, Howard county, Saturday evening.  Almost all of the outbuildings on the farm and their contents were consumed, and great difficulty was experienced in saving Mr. Brown’s handsome dwelling, which was in close proximity.  The fire was first detected in the barnyard, and at the time the wind was blowing almost a gale.  In a very short time the flames spread and totally consumed two barns, two corn houses, a large granary, a hoghouse and a wagon shed.  In these various buildings there were 200 barrels of corn, 300 bushels of wheat, 10 tons of hay and a large lot of straw and fodder and farming implements, aggregating in value more than $500, all of which were burned.  Mr. Brown succeeded in moving his stock to a place of safety.  The loss is estimated at $6,000, with a partial Insurance in a Montgomery company.

Your next steps:

From the bank barn, turn back in the direction you came, then head to the right along the road and you will see a path on your right taking you to the front of the large Gudelsky building. You may also optionally take the steps down between the two buildings to see the lower side of the bank barn.

Map to Gudeslky
Front of Gudeslky Building