My photo of the roof interor of the round barn at Mullinville will be published in the summer 2011 issue of Kansas! Magazine.  It will be located in the gallery section, which is in the back of the magazine, and will be a half page in size.

Round barn at Mullinville, Kansas

The Fromme-Birney “round” barn was built in 1912 by Henry Fromme as a place to house his 28 draft horses.  In those days, round barns were supposedly thought to be more wind resistent, made more efficient use of space, and used less lumber to build for the same volume in space.  Actually, the barn isn’t round – it is 16 sided.  The cost to build it was $8,000.  The barn is 50 feet tall and is 70 feet in diameter.  Sadly, shortly after it was built, tractors replaced the horses and it ended up being used mostly for hay storage.  In the 1980’s, Phyllis Birney became the owner, and in 1987 the barn was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.  In 1993 it was given to the Kiowa County Historical Society, and in 1995 it was restored using a grant.

The interior of the roof is an architectural wonder!  I shot this photo looking up at the roof, and I’m amazed at the craftmanship it took to complete this.  They sure don’t build them like this anymore! 

Interior shot of the roof, Mullinville barn


Also inside the barn is a neat display relating the history of the barn.  The barn also has a really neat weathervane on top, and a very cool windmill outside.




If you’re ever near Greensburg, be sure to take the side trip to see this historic gem, as it is definitely well worth the trip.  Kudos to the Kiowa County Historical Society for saving and restoring this amazing structure (and if you visit, be sure to put a donation in the box located at the barn).

Directions:  from U.S. Highway 54 at Mullinville, go 3 1/2 miles south, then 1 3/4 miles west.