Lost and Found features brief profiles of historic landmarks and structures, one lost and one saved.


The round barn was an unusual form of farm building. Although praised by advocates for providing maximum floor space, increased storage, and inexpensive construction costs, few were actually built. Of three erected in Centre County, the James Beck Round Barn in Spring Mills, Neff Township, was capable of housing twenty head of livestock. Constructed in 1913 by Aaron Thomas of Centre Hall, the James Beck Round Barn measured seventy feet in diameter and fifty feet in height. Because of its rarity – and in spite of its poor condition – it was entered in the National Register of Historic Places in 1978. The structure continued deteriorating and eventually collapsed.



At the time of its construc­tion in 1875, the immense barn complex at Normandy Farm in Whitpain Township, Montgomery County, contained some of the most technologi­cally advanced agricultural equipment in the country. Built for prominent Nordstown newspaper editor and innova­tive farmer William M. Singerly (who purchased the property in 1873), the T-shaped, gabled building with walls of half­-timbering above stucco mea­sures forty thousand square feet! Since the late 1950s, the barn has been used for storage. Local historical organizations and conservancies are currently working to identify adaptive reuse possibilities for the build­ing, which has been deemed eligible for the National Register of Historic Places.