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FARMING BUILDING S.
faults; so they are in as little danger as ever of removal.
As in farming we have a good deal to do with acres, I may as well state here, that four thousand eight hundred and forty square yards make one square acre, and that each side of that space will therefore be about sixty-nine yards and a half long. Each acre contains four roods, each rood forty poles, and each pole rather more than thirty yards. Our farm-yard occupies, with the various buildings, about five roods, or an' acre and a quarter. The buildings are principally these :— two great barns ; stables ; two granaries; haybarns, cow-houses, piggeries, hen-houses, pigeon-houses, and a cottage for our head man and his family; though this scarcely stands in the yard. There is a railed partition, forming, with the hedges, an inclosure, called the rickyard (into which, I am happy to say, no incendiary has yet entered with his tinder-box]. In this part stand now four stacks of hay, containing, together, about two hundred loads ; five stacks of wheat-corn ; two of clover-hay; a bean-stack or two; a faggot-stack; and a tolerably large stack of straw. Towards the north the cattle-yard is fenced by a halm, or stubble-wall, which has lasted, and is likely to continue several years.
I must now describe the buildings a little more particularly, and first, the barns. These, on the usual plan, are oblong structures. The largest is nearly sixty feet in length, and about thirty-five feet wide.
This space is divided into three parts: the middle, reaching across the barn, from door to door, is called the floor; being laid with stout and smooth oak boards,—so smooth, as most boys know they
usually are, that a good slide may be had upon them ;—and a bad one, if a projecting nail catch the foot, and cause an unlucky fall. This part, on which waggons enter to deposit their loads, passing out at the opposite doors, is separated from the sides, called bays, by planks or rails, a few feet high. In the bays the corn is stacked, ready for threshing. A small granary is inclosed in one corner of this barn.
As to the principal granary, I remember trying to shew my wisdom once, by saying that it was nonsense to set it upon legs, and make men ascend with heavy sacks on stepladders. The twelve stone pillars on which it stands have each a projecting cap, like a mushroom top; at which I also laughed, as being utterly useless, till my uncle told me he thought I had a mushroom top, not to know
that granaries were so built, to keep a floor free from wet; and that the pillars were capped to prevent rats and mice from climbing into the place, where they would be glad enough to obtain board and lodging. The granary has sundry bins or partitions for various grain and seeds.
The stables have stalls for fourteen horses, including two of better quality for our own riding nags. I need say nothing about racks and hay-lofts, which are equally common in town or country.
The hay-barns are like roofs of houses set on very tall legs, with opening weather-boards extending part of the way down, something like those of a brew-house. Hay, stacked in them, of course, requires no thatching; but I always think that which stands in the
air the sweetest.