Pony Barn

The Pony Barn before it got it’s new roof in 2017

This is another installment of Easterday Lore. Those that have been to our office have probably noticed the old barn adjacent to the main building. Internally this is referred to as the Pony Barn or the Red Barn (though it’s only vaguely red anymore). This is dates back to when this property was part of Great Grandpa (Russell) Easterday’s farm. At that time the property was at the edge of town. Back then there were a couple of cattle barns on the site as well. One had been swallowed up by nature back in the seventies and the other was replaced by a pre-engineered steel building around that same time.

Hereford Bull
By User Robert Merkel on en.wikipedia – US Department of Agriculture, Public Domain

In the early days, the Easterday farm included the property extending from the current site of Easterday Construction up to highway 10 and across 10 to 17th Road. In the 60’s, Russell’s Hereford cattle would graze in pasture at the end of Slate Street. Up until the construction of the high school in 1969, kids would ride their bikes up to the end of Slate Street to pet and feed the cattle grazing on the other side of the fence. The field behind the baseball and little league diamonds and the farmland directly north of the Culver Middle/High School are all that remain of this farm owned by descendants of the Easterday family. This is all leased property now. The working parts of the farm were sold off over time.

The Pony Barn truly housed horses & ponies in the day. Russell’s grandson, Larry Berger, had a pony housed there when he was a kid. Russell owned and rode a beautiful five-gaited horse that was also stabled there. (That was before the offices actually moved to that location from their original location in the State Exchange Bank. That’s another story for another time.) At that time, Russell and his wife, Wanda, lived at 309 Ohio Street. Between the farm and the construction company, Russell was successful and always drove a Cadillac. But as a farmer and contractor, that Cadillac was a working man’s car. There was often grass caught in the bumper and cow manure in the wheel wells from when he’d driven it through the field to inspect the cattle. And the day Grandpa Easterday bought his grandson Larry a pony… that pony road home in the back seat of his Cadillac!

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