Found in Barn


9 Years
Feb 28, 2010
N/E of Richmond, VA
When we bought this property, the owner had passed on two years earlier and the family didn't seem to be caring much for it. The barn was full of stuff, much of it not very useful because of age and lack of care. As I cleaned it out today, I did find some nice things I am happy about.

1 large chicken nesting box (metal with 14 nesting spots). It's a little rusty here and there, but I think I can sufficiently clean it up. Each box still had straw in it!

2 roosts, appear to be made of wood and look like a very straight branch, but are definitely manufactured.

3 mucking shovels

1 pitchfork

1 pickax (what does a farmer need with one of those?)

Lots of various sized nails and hardware


I also found a hoof, intact with bone, among some farrier tools. Creepy. I assume it must have been for practice?

But the coup de gras is

5 blue Ball Perfect Mason jars, vintage (not repos!!) I only brought two in to date, one of them is circa 1923-1933 and the other is circa 1910 - 1923

I also found two lovely purple bottles, but I don't recognize them enough to date them or even to know what to call them. If anybody knows much about old bottles, I'll take a pic and post it. I would love to know what they are.


Quiet as a Church Mouse
11 Years
Dec 19, 2009
Southwest TN
Post pics of those bottles. I'll look them up in my book and see if I can date them for ya! Those old Mason's are so cool!! Great finds! I'd love to prowl through that stuff with telling what all is in there!


13 Years
Dec 16, 2008
Greenleaf, WI
I LOVE old things! DH and I were lucky enough to be given free rein at a very old decrepid farmstead next door before they tore the place down. We found so much neat stuff! I think hubby brought home 4 or 5 pitchforks. We got an old WI license plate from the 40's too!

Anianna, I had to use a pickaxe (one we found at an old farm, incidentally) to loosen up some clay to plant an apple tree last year. So I can see how farmers would need them. The old-timers never did throw anything away either...


9 Years
Feb 28, 2010
N/E of Richmond, VA
Thanks! I'll get pics of those tomorrow.


9 Years
Feb 28, 2010
N/E of Richmond, VA
That makes sense. We do have some hard ground and some apple trees. We also have two trees with the apple trees that I don't recognize. They grow something in pairs, like how cherries grow, that are round and hard. I don't recognize the fruit or the type of tree. Something else in the barn is piles of wooden produce baskets and a sign for a produce stand. Out behind the barn is a very old trailer that appears to have once been used to haul and sell produce. It has some old plates in it from NC and was converted to a work room. I had found some nice old tools in there that need some TLC.

I wish I knew more about horse tac and equipment. There is a lot of stuff I recognize as horse stuff, but I don't know enough about it to know what much of it is. All of the leather on the tac is brittle, but there are some decorative things on some of it I want to pull off and keep; little metal things with pictures of horses and horseshoes. There are a lot of wooden things with metal attachments that may be hitches.

I'm told that the guy who owned the place collected glass jars and bottles, but I've only found a handful of those types of things. I guess his step son took the rest of it when we bought the place. He was supposed to have cleaned it all out, but ended up giving up after a day or two. Too bad he didn't leave it all. There was an old Camero out in the woods stuffed to the brim with stuff!

Oh, I also found a surveyors tripod. That seemed like an odd thing to find in a barn. There's also a ten speed bike just parked by a tree in the woods.


Emu Hugger
12 Years
Mar 10, 2008
a bumpy dirt road in Florida
You can post pics of the horse stuff and some of us can try and help. I know they still sell horse hoofs that have been cut in half, still having some of the leg on one side, hinged across the hoof , as a teaching aid for farriers and vets. They are pretty pricy if I remember. The decorative pieces sound like what you would find on a horse harnesses, the ones for pulling. Farrier equipment is always nice to have.


Global Menace
10 Years
Mar 20, 2009
N. Chesterfield, Virginia
The decorative pieces sound like horse brasses - very collectable!

Sounds like you have a veritable treasure trove in that barn! If you want somebody semi-local to go through stuff with you, PM me. I'm no expert, but I know a little about a lot of things. And my dad still uses many of his "antique" tools. LOL


Mother Goose
13 Years
Mar 30, 2009
Central WI
I have many many blue canning jars that I have picked up at auctions, but I never thought to try and date the jars (I thought they were pretty so I bought them...).

Anyway, after reading this post I thought I should take a second look at them..... WOW they are OLD! Almost 100 years! circa 1910-1923 Ball Perfect Mason jars....

I have no idea how many of these I have since they are in use, but what a cool thing to find out! I am also posting the link to the site that helped me with the dating of the jars. The script of how Ball is written on the jar was the easiest way to determine age...

Have fun finding your treasures! That is the coolest thing about purchasing an old farm; all the goodies you find just laying around!

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