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Tobacco Barn Restoration Project

Why Preserve a Tobacco Barn?

Tobacco was essential to North Carolina's economic and social history for the better part of 300 years. Thousands of families were supported by these crops, and their profits built cities, hospitals and universities. Traditional tobacco barns have always been a symbol of the significance of these crops to North Carolina, especially in the Triad region. Modern technologies have made the flue-cured barn obsolete, but many of us remember spending hours working in those barns. As these barns have fallen out of use, many have been abandoned and are quickly disappearing. Our Tobacco Barn Restoration Project will preserve out local history and educate our community about the important role tobacco playing in the building of our area. 

Curing Tobacco

Tobacco was often called a "13 month crop" because of the labor intensive, multi-step process involved in the growing of this crop. January  meant tobacco farmers started to prepare seed beds for planting. By February, farmers planted their prepared seedbeds. Usually by April, farmers would transport their seedbeds into their fields, which had been being prepared February and March. April through August began the labor intensive process of keeping the fields weeded, topping the plants and keeping the plants "insect fee". The hot months of summer involved "suckering", "topping", and finally "priming" the crops.  Click the link below to find out more about the harvesting process and the importance of tobacco barns.

Timeline for this project

We plan to begin construction on the Tobacco Barn in the late spring of 2018. It is our hope that this project will be complete by the early Fall of 2018.  The Tobacco Barn Restoration Project will involve deconstructing a tobacco barn that was donated to the Museum from the Kernersville area. We will then have the barn carefully reconstructed on the Kernersville Museum's campus. Once the tobacco barn is completely restored, it will serve as an outdoor exhibit for the community to enjoy. 

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Tobacco Barn Restoration Project Progress Pictures


Future site of the Kernersville Museum Tobacco Barn Restoration Project!


First load of stone for the foundation


Unloading first load tobacco logs from original barn

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Tobacco Logs moved from original barn


Tobacco Barn Logs


More stone for foundation


Handmade bricks have arrived. They had to be unloaded one by one to prevent them from breaking


The second load of logs have arrived

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The future foundation of the Tobacco Barn


Pouring the cement for the footers


Work begins on getting the footers up and the frame of the barn started


Getting the footers in and ready so the building of the foundation can begin.


Half of the foundation done, the stone work is absolutely beautiful!


Construction of the foundation

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The flue chutes are added to the front of the barn


Finished foundation of the barn complete with two flue chutes on the front. The next phase will be adding the logs.


The first logs being added to the barn.

Log Work

Five layers of logs have been added to the barn. Work on the barn has continued at a steady pace.

Tobacco Barn roof

The walls of the tobacco barn are done. The roof is now being added on.

Tobacco Barn Roof

The roof of the barn being added on.


The roof has been added!

Inside look at the rafters

Inside look at the roof of the barn.


The chinking process is almost complete. Chinking was a process that farmers would use to help insulate the barns.

Ribbon Cutting

On October 9, 2018 the official Ribbon Cutting for the Tobacco Barn took place

Finished Product

On October 20, 2018 the Tobacco Barn officially opened to the public

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