In 1889 Joseph Schellinger, recently arrived from Wisconsin, agreed to build a barn for John Undersander. They agreed the barn would be built for $100 and that every evening John would provide the men with a small keg of beer.
Together with the skills of German craftsmen, materials from the just formed Mathew Hall Lumber Company, and beer from the local brewery, the Undersander barn was built.
The barn, a classic 4-bay timber frame structure was one of the last of its kind to be built in Minnesota as the ancient craft of timber framing was dying out. It was giving way to the faster and cheaper balloon or stick frame construction we know today.
Violent storms and nearly 130 years have not taken down the Undersander Barn. But this summer we will as we prepare to re-locate the barn to the site of the Avon Hills Folk School. The barn will be catalogued, documented, disassembled and put into storage.
The Avon Hills Folk School will be located on the current home of the Francis and Karen Schellinger property, south of Avon in the heart of the Avon Hills. Francis is the grandson of Joseph Schellinger and Chris Schellinger is the great-grandson of Joseph.
This barn will provide a tangible and artistic link to the heritage and craftsmanship of the early settlers to this region. At the same time it will provide an inspiring and soaring programming space for many of the classes and experiences offered through the Avon Hills Folk School. These will include Timber Framing, Boat Building, Maple Sugaring, Whole Beast Butchery, Pottery, Writer’s Workshops and much more.
Join us! Help us to preserve an important link to our past, to our history while creating important space for growing community right here in the Avon Hills.