Shelbourne Museum Round Barn
Fred “Silo” Quimbly constructed the Round Barn, a three-story building measuring eighty feet in diameter, in 1901 in East Passumpsic,Vermont. Round barns enjoyed a brief period of popularity in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The Shakers designed and built the first round barn in America in 1826 in Hancock, Massachusetts. The publication of the building’s plans in a nationally distributed farm journal in 1896, sparked the construction of approximately twenty-four comparable barns in Vermont beginning in 1899.
In 1985 and 1986 the Shelburne Museum relocated the Round Barn to the Museum grounds. A helicopter flew the upper segment of the silo, which weighs nine thousand pounds, from Passumpsic to Shelburne, while workmen dismantled the remainder of the building piece-by-piece and transported it on flatbed trucks to Museum grounds. After reconstruction, new materials replaced what had aged beyond use.
Round Barn, Shelburne Museum
About Shelbourne Museum
Shelburne Museum is a museum of art and Americana located in Shelburne, Vermont, United States. Over 150,000 works are exhibited in 39 exhibition buildings, 25 of which are historic and were relocated to the Museum grounds. It is located on 45 acres (18 ha) near Lake Champlain.
Impressionist paintings, folk art, quilts and textiles, decorative arts, furniture, American paintings, and an array of 17th- to 20th-century artifacts are on view. Shelburne is home to collections of 19th-century American folk art, quilts, 19th- and 20th-century decoys, and carriages.
Electra Havemeyer Webb was a pioneering collector of American folk art and founded Shelburne Museum in 1947. The daughter ofHenry Osborne Havemeyer and Louisine Elder Havemeyer, important collectors of Impressionism, European and Asian art, she exercised an independent eye and passion for art, artifacts, and architecture celebrating a distinctly American aesthetic.
When creating the Museum she took the step of collecting 18th and 19th century buildings from New England and New York in which to display the Museum's holdings, relocating 20 historic structures to Shelburne. These include houses, barns, a meeting house, a one-room schoolhouse, a lighthouse, a jail, a general store, a covered bridge, and the 220-foot steamboat Ticonderoga.
In Shelburne Mrs. Webb sought to create "an educational project, varied and alive." Shelburne's collections are exhibited in a village-like setting of historic New England architecture, accented by a landscape that includes over 400 lilacs, a circular formal garden, herb and heirloom vegetable gardens, and perennial gardens.