Looks like a Big Chicken Barn

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And it is!  Or was.  Heading south on Hwy 1 from Bar Harbor with my wife and daughter, we were driving along to see what there was to be seen.  And then, we passed an old building that resulted in the dreaded “You’re outvoted” chorus, so… I turned around.

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Welcome to the Big Chicken Barn. I’ve been to chicken barns.  They’re filthy.  In the south, they’re one story buildings that eventually fall to ruin.  This, though was essentially a hatchery, where chickens are raised until about 3 months old.  It was built in the 1950’s and continued in operation to the latter 1960’s.  In the mid 1980’s, someone cleaned it up, and now you can shop for antiques and books where 50,000 chicks once tread.   Despite the old look and questionable practice of having open windows for a building with damageable stock, I was pleased that the old timbers no longer held the smell of ammonia or other reminders of its past use.   In any case, let’s peek at what’s inside.  Why?  Because I took pictures, and you’re bored.  Maybe an old peddler’s tonic would help?

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How about picking up a solid investment in the environment?

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The first floor is loaded with antiques.  Some of these are furniture, some are remnants of old buildings, and much are the tools, knick-knacks, toys and the detritus of life that doesn’t merit the landfill simply because it’s old.  Speaking of old, the first floor’s charms seem to appeal to the generation that lived with the stuff, aged, oh 70 and up.  A walk down memory lane.  There’s actually a good variety, and while no doubt some come to search for something specific, it’s more likely a place just to say “I had that when I was a kid, and I have an empty (fill in the blank) where I can put it.”  I have to wonder about their prospects when our elderly generation passes on, as the prices don’t speak to any desire to move the inventory.

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At 100 yards in length, you never forget you’re in an unusual venue – the barn construction remains apparent everywhere.

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The second floor is for the books. 

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Or, seemingly, magazines. 

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“Life,” “Sports Illustrated,” and many others are kept in plastic sleeves and filed chronologically for any collection completionists out there.  This one from Feb 22, 1966 caught my eye.

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The sixties were heady times indeed, dating by computer.  I don’t think college kids even date by computer today.  Magazine racks, magazine racks, and… books.  They have a collection of rare or autographed books, but in general, I thought there selection was substandard, particularly the sci-fi/fantasy.  As a side note, anyone looking for used CDs shouldn’t bother stopping. Dreck.

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In any case, if you’re in Ellsworth, Maine… stop by… no.  If you’re ever in The Chicken Barn, then you’re in Ellsworth, Maine. 

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