Weighing in at 4500 pounds it was fascinating to see the cupola fly through the air and into place on top of the barn-next step is to add the windows next week!
A cupola(pronounced “kyou’puh luh”) is a structure that sits atop a larger rooftop or dome and can range in size from very basic and small, to extremely large and ornate. The small can be a simple vented box you would see on a barn while the cupola on St.Peters Basilica in Rome is an example of the other extreme.
Large Cupolas may be accessible from a stairway on the inside giving a commanding vantage point from which to look out over the world. This kind of cupola is often called a belvedere or a “widow’s walk”. Often smaller cupolas are constructed without access from inside and windows are added which provide a natural light source for illuminating the spaces below. These types of cupolas are also known as “lanterns”.
The origins and history of the Cupola can be traced back to 8th century Islamic architecture. These first cupolas placed atop minarets, were large and sometimes ornate structures with one or more balconies from which the daily call to prayer would be announced. These early cupolas are very significant because they are believed to be the inspiration for the dome which led to massive achievements in architectural design. These bold new designs that emerged were used as symbols for proof of cultural superiority. During the renaissance, most major european cities and Islamic states were building a plethora of these magnificent buildings. The cupola had evolved to allow architecture to become a very artistic and creative status symbol and today, the cupola stands as a statement of a major achievement in architecture.
The old boards, made of wooden sheathing, look pretty crazy from the exterior but the interior is really starting to take shape.The timbers are walnut,chestnut and oak and it is all starting to look like an old barn-which of course, it is!
The guys have been working incredibly hard despite the several feet of snow and very cold temperatures. Soon the boards will be covered in insulation(SIPS-Structural Insulated Panel Systems) on the exterior, and then a final wall will go up with shingles.
The next piece was figuring out how and where to get an older barn and be able to relocate it to our property. Quite by chance we located a company that does exactly that. Colonial Barn Restoration-check out their website,it is amazing what they can do to a barn!They have located a barn for us from Pennsylvania-3 miles from where my husband grew up,so it is very special.
Here is an excerpt from their website describing what they do:
As the price of land rises, people in this area subdivide their land into smaller and smaller lots. We have been involved with a number of projects where an antique barn was located on a subdivided lot. The owners wanted to keep the barn with the original house on the property so we moved the barn over on the same property. Since then we have learned the ins and outs of moving buildings and have moved several. Moving buildings in one piece is very economical. The state of Massachusetts even takes down power lines for free to help facilitate the move.Often times our clients want to move a barn frame a long distance or there are too many trees in the way to move it to its new location in one piece. We have lots of experience taking apart and reassembling barns in new locations.When we take a barn completely apart we have a chance to inspect every structural element and make any needed repairs. We can also make slight changes to the frame to satisfy building code restraints or change the layout slightly for modern uses. We have a design and engineering team to help make these changes.We often use reclaimed lumber for repairs so that they are not as apparent.